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Temporal range: Cenomanian
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Superorder: Crocodylomorpha
Clade: Crocodyliformes
Genus: Kemkemia
Cau & Maganuco, 2009
K. auditorei
Binomial name
Kemkemia auditorei
Cau & Maganuco, 2009

Kemkemia is a genus of crocodyliforms living in the Cretaceous, described from a single fossil in 1999 recovered from Morocco by an Italian team searching for fossil invertebrates.

The type species, Kemkemia auditorei, was named and described in 2009 by Italian paleontologists Andrea Cau and Simone Maganuco and is based on a single distal caudal vertebra, MSNM V6408. This vertebra measures 60.48 mm in length and 33.81 mm in height.[1] The genus name refers to the Kem Kem Beds and the specific name honours Italian paleontological illustrator Marco Auditore. The fossil dates from the Cenomanian.

The describers, because of the general morphology of the vertebra, especially the strongly developed neural spine, originally considered it likely that K. auditorei was a theropod dinosaur belonging to the group Neoceratosauria, but in view of the limited remains cautiously assigned it to a more general Neotheropoda incertae sedis. However, the authors later discovered it to be a typical crocodyliform, rather than an unusual theropod.[2]

Kemkemia was a predator with a body length of about four to five metres and, given that the vertebra is not very robust, possibly lightly built. The species length could be extrapolated because the specimen is that of an adult. The fossil is one of the few known crocodyliform caudal vertebrae and comes from the Kem Kem Beds that have produced the fossils of very large predatory dinosaur species: Spinosaurus, Carcharodontosaurus and Deltadromeus.


  1. ^ 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.
  2. ^ 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.