Kem Kem Beds

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Kem Kem Beds
Stratigraphic range: Cenomanian[1]
Type Geological formation
Country  Morocco

The Kem Kem Beds (also referred to by various other names including the Continental Red Beds and Continental intercalaire[2]) is a geological formation in Morocco and Algeria whose strata date back to the Late Cretaceous. Dinosaur remains are among the fossils that have been recovered from the formation.[1]

Vertebrate paleofauna[edit]


Crocodylomorphs reported from the Continental Red Beds
Genus Species Location Stratigraphic position Material Notes Images


Aegisuchus witmeri

"Partial braincase of a large individual with skull roof, temporal, and occipital regions."[3]

An aegyptosuchid.


Araripesuchus rattoides


Elosuchus cherifiensis

An Elosuchid.


Hamadasuchus rebouli

A Peirosaurid.


K. auditorei

Errachidia Province, Morocco[4]

Known from an isolated caudal vertebra.[4]

Initially thought to be a neotheropod,[4] but subsequently discovered to be an indeterminate crocodyliform.[5]


Laganosuchus maghrebensisis

A Stomatosuchid.


Indeterminate lithostrotian remains once misattributed to the titanosauridae are present in the province of Ksar-es-Souk, Morocco.[1]

Color key
Taxon Reclassified taxon Taxon falsely reported as present Dubious taxon or junior synonym Ichnotaxon Ootaxon Morphotaxon
Uncertain or tentative taxa are in small text; crossed out taxa are discredited.
Dinosaurs reported from the Continental Red Beds
Genus Species Location Stratigraphic position Material Notes Images

Abelisauridae indet.[6]


Isolated teeth.[6]

An indeterminate abelisaurid.


"B. nougaredi"

"Sacrum [and] forelimb elements."[7]

The remains referred to this species represent at least two different species of indeterminate sauropod.[8]


C. saharicus[1]

Ksar-es-Souk province, Morocco.[1]


D. agilis

"Partial skeleton, isolated limb elements."[9]

Dromaeosauridae indet.[6]


Isolated teeth.[6]

An indeterminate dromaeosaurid.

cf. Elaphrosaurus


Ksar-es-Souk province, Morocco.[1]

Fossils previously referred to cf. Elaphrosaurus are actually indeterminate theropod remains.


I. tedreftensis


cf. Majungasaurus Indeterminate Ksar-es-Souk province, Morocco.[1] Misidentified remains of an indeterminate abelisaurid.



Ksar-es-Souk province, Morocco.[1] Misidentified indeterminate sauropod remains.

Saurischia indet.[11]


Isolated vertebrae.[11]

An indeterminate saurischian.


S. pachytholus

"An isolated and almost complete left frontal."[13]

A carcharodontosaurid distinct from Carcharodontosaurus.[12][13]

Sigilmassasaurus[1] S. brevicolis[1] Ksar-es-Souk province, Morocco.[1] "Cervical and anterior dorsal vertebrae."[14][15]

A non-carcharodontosaurid tetanuran theropod.[15]


Spinosaurus cf. aegyptiacus[1]

Ksar-es-Souk province, Morocco.[1]

S. maroccanus[1]

Ksar-es-Souk province, Morocco.[1]

"Cervical vertebrae, dentary fragments," and a "dorsal neural arch."[16]


Pterosaurs of the Kem Kem Beds
Genus Species Location Stratigraphic position Abundance Notes Images


A. saharica[17]

Azhdarchidae indet.[18]


Two middle cervical vertebrae.[18]

Azhdarchoidea indet.[18]



Dsungaripteroidea (sensu Kellner, 2003) indet.[18][19]


Anterior fragment from a jaw, possibly a mandible.[18]

?Pteranodontidae indet.[17]


A fragment of bone, possibly the anterior section of rostrum.[17]

A possible pteranodontid.[17]


S. moroccensis[20]

Classified by some authors as a species belonging to the genus Coloborhynchus.[17]

Tapejaridae indet.[21]


A fragment of bone originally interpreted as a fragment of anterior mandibular symphysis,[21] though it might pertain to the rostrum instead.[17]

Might belong to the family Thalassodromidae instead.[17]


Turtles reported from the Continental Red Beds
Genus Species Location Stratigraphic position Material Notes


Dirqadim schaefferi

A Euraxemydid


Galianemys emringeri

A Cearachelyin


Hamadachelys escuilliei

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q Weishampel, David B; et al. (2004). "Dinosaur distribution (Late Cretaceous, Africa)." In: Weishampel, David B.; Dodson, Peter; and Osmólska, Halszka (eds.): The Dinosauria, 2nd, Berkeley: University of California Press. Pp. 604-605. ISBN 0-520-24209-2.
  2. ^ Michard, A. (2008). Continental evolution: the geology of Morocco : structure, stratigraphy, and tectonics of the Africa-Atlantic-Mediterranean Triple junction. Published by Springer, 2008. 424 pages. ISBN 3-540-77075-5, ISBN 978-3-540-77075-6
  3. ^ Casey M. Holliday and Nicholas M. Gardner (2012). "A New Eusuchian Crocodyliform with Novel Cranial Integument and Its Significance for the Origin and Evolution of Crocodylia". PLoS ONE 7 (1): e30471. Bibcode:2012PLoSO...7E0471H. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0030471. PMC 3269432. PMID 22303441. 
  4. ^ a b c Cau, Andrea; Maganuco, Simone (2009). "A new theropod dinosaur, represented by a single unusual caudal vertebra from the Kem Kem Beds (Cretaceous) of Morocco". Atti Soc. it. Sci. nat. Museo civ. Stor. nat. Milano 150 (II): 239–257.
  5. ^ Lio, G., Agnolin, F., Cau, A. and Maganuco, S. (2012). "Crocodyliform affinities for Kemkemia auditorei Cau and Maganuco, 2009, from the Late Cretaceous of Morocco." Atti della Società Italiana di Scienze Naturali e del Museo di Storia Naturale di Milano, 153 (I), s. 119–126.
  6. ^ a b c d Ute Richter, Alexander Mudroch and Lisa G. Buckley (2013). "Isolated theropod teeth from the Kem Kem Beds (Early Cenomanian) near Taouz, Morocco". Paläontologische Zeitschrift 87 (2): 291–309. doi:10.1007/s12542-012-0153-1. 
  7. ^ "Table 13.1," in Weishampel, et al. (2004). Page 267.
  8. ^ P. D. Mannion, P. Upchurch, R. N. Barnes and O. Mateus. (2013). "Osteology of the Late Jurassic Portuguese sauropod dinosaur Lusotitan atalaiensis (Macronaria) and the evolutionary history of basal titanosauriforms." Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 168: 98-206.
  9. ^ "Table 4.1," in Weishampel, et al. (2004). Page 76.
  10. ^ "Table 4.1," in Weishampel, et al. (2004). Page 78.
  11. ^ a b B. McFeeters (2013). "Bone "taxon" B: Reevaluation of a supposed small theropod dinosaur from the mid-Cretaceous of Morocco". Kirtlandia 58: 38–41. 
  12. ^ a b Andrea Cau, Fabio M. Dalla Vecchia and Matteo Fabbri (2012). "A thick-skulled theropod (Dinosauria, Saurischia) from the Upper Cretaceous of Morocco with implications for carcharodontosaurid cranial evolution". Cretaceous Research. in press. doi:10.1016/j.cretres.2012.09.002. 
  13. ^ a b Andrea Cau, Fabio Marco Dalla Vecchia and Matteo Fabbri (2012). "Evidence of a new carcharodontosaurid from the Upper Cretaceous of Morocco". Acta Palaeontologica Polonica 57 (3): 661–665. doi:10.4202/app.2011.0043. 
  14. ^ "Table 4.1," in Weishampel, et al. (2004). Page 74.
  15. ^ a b Bradley McFeeters, Michael J. Ryan, Sanja Hinic-Frlog and Claudia Schröder-Adams (2013). "A reevaluation of Sigilmassasaurus brevicollis (Dinosauria) from the Cretaceous of Morocco". Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences. in press. doi:10.1139/cjes-2012-0129. 
  16. ^ "Table 4.1," in Weishampel, et al. (2004). Page 73.
  17. ^ a b c d e f g h i Ibrahim, N.; Unwin, D.M.; Martill, D.M.; Baidder, L.; Zouhri, S. (2010). "A New Pterosaur (Pterodactyloidea: Azhdarchidae) from the Upper Cretaceous of Morocco". PLoS ONE 5 (5): e10875. Bibcode:2010PLoSO...510875I. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0010875. PMC 2877115. PMID 20520782. 
  18. ^ a b c d e f g h i Taissa Rodrigues, Alexander W. A. Kellner, Bryn J. Mader, Dale A. Russell (2011). "New pterosaur specimens from the Kem Kem beds (Upper Cretaceous, Cenomanian) of Morocco". Rivista Italiana di Paleontologia e Stratigrafia 117 (1): 149–160. 
  19. ^ I.e. a member of the clade containing the most recent common ancestor of Nyctosaurus and Quetzalcoatlus and all their descendants. See: Kellner, A.W.A., 2003. Pterosaur phylogeny and comments on the evolutionary history of the AN group. In: Buffetaut, E., Mazin, J.M. (Eds.), Evolution and Palaeobiology of Pterosaurs. Geological Society, London, Special Publication 217, 105–137
  20. ^ a b Rodrigues, Taissa; Kellner, Alexander W. A (2008). "Review of the pterodactyloid pterosaur Coloborhynchus". Zitteliana B 28: 219–228. 
  21. ^ a b c Peter Wellnhofer, Eric Buffetaut (1999). "Pterosaur remains from the Cretaceous of Morocco". Paläontologische Zeitschrift 73 (1–2): 133–142. doi:10.1007/BF02987987.