Sauroctonus

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Sauroctonus
Temporal range: Late Permian
Sauroctonus parringtoni 01.jpg
Sauroctonus parringtoni
Saur parringt1DB.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Synapsida
Order: Therapsida
Suborder: Gorgonopsia
Family: Gorgonopsidae
Genus: Sauroctonus
Species
  • S. parringtoni
  • S. progressus

Sauroctonus (Sauroctonus progressus) was a large (2 m. long) gorgonopsid that lived in the Late Permian epoch before the Permian-Triassic extinction event that wiped out many life forms on Earth (250 million years ago). Its fossils have been found in South Africa and the Volga basin of Russia.

Sauroctonus's flattened, triangular skull was about 25 centimeters long, with a parietal eye, a primitive character, on the crown. The upper and lower jaw each contained one pair of massive canines (the upper pair was larger); the other teeth were smaller, but were also sharp and pointed. In addition, minute, blunt teeth were present on the palatine bones. The lower jaw was widened to form a kind of chin. The long, lightly built, five-toed limbs bore a resemblance to mammals' limbs, but despite its 'mammalian' characteristics, Sauroctonus was not one of the ancestors of mammals.

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References[edit]

Benes, Josef. Prehistoric Animals and Plants. Pg. 95. Prague: Artia, 1979.

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