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Temporal range: Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous
Fossil of T. pusillus
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Family: Atoposauridae
Genus: Theriosuchus
Owen, 1879
  • T. pusillus Owen, 1879 (type)
  • T. grandinaris Lauprasert et al., 2011

Theriosuchus is an extinct genus of atoposaurid mesoeucrocodylian from Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous of Europe (southern England) and Southeast Asia (Thailand), with fragmentary records from Middle Jurassic and Early Cretaceous sites in China, Morocco, and Scotland.[1]


Skull elements of T. pusillus

Two valid species are currently recognized: Theriosuchus pusillus from southern England,[2] and T. grandinaris from Thailand.[3] Theriosuchus was previously assigned to Atoposauridae, but a 2016 cladistic analysis recovered it as a neosuchian more closely related to members of the family Paralligatoridae than to atoposaurids.[1]

Two species previously assigned to this genus, Theriosuchus ibericus[4] and T. symplesiodon,[5] have been re-assigned to the new genus Sabresuchus.[1] On the other hand, Theriosuchus guimarotae from Portugal[6] has been re-assigned to Knoetschkesuchus.[7]


Fossils belonging to the genus are abundant at several European sites, namely Dorset, southern England.


  1. ^ a b c Jonathan P. Tennant; Philip D. Mannion; Paul Upchurch (2016). "Evolutionary relationships and systematics of Atoposauridae (Crocodylomorpha: Neosuchia): implications for the rise of Eusuchia". Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society. in press.
  2. ^ Owen, R. (1879). "Monograph on the fossil Reptilia of the Wealden and Purbeck Formations. Supplement IX, Crocodilia (Goniopholis, Brachydectes, Nannosuchus, Theriosuchus, and Nuthetes)". Palaeontographical Society of London Monograph. 33: 1–19. 
  3. ^ Komsorn Lauprasert; Chalida Laojumpon; Wanitchaphat Saenphala; Gilles Cuny; Kumthorn Thirakhupt; Varavudh Suteethorn (2011). "Atoposaurid crocodyliforms from the Khorat Group of Thailand: first record of Theriosuchus from Southeast Asia". Paläontologische Zeitschrift 85 (1): 37–47. doi:10.1007/s12542-010-0071-z.
  4. ^ Brinkmann, W. (1992). "Die Krokodilier-Fauna aus der Unter-Kreide (Ober-Barremium) von Uña (Provinz Cuenca, Spanien)". Berliner Geowissenschaftliche Abhandlungen (E). 5: 1–123. 
  5. ^ Jeremy Martin, Márton Rabi and Zoltán Csiki (2010). "Survival of Theriosuchus (Mesoeucrocodylia: Atoposauridae) in a Late Cretaceous archipelago: a new species from the Maastrichtian of Romania". Naturwissenschaften 97 (9): 845–854. doi:10.1007/s00114-010-0702-y. PMID 20711558.
  6. ^ Schwarz, Daniela and Salisbury, Steven W. (2005). "A new species of Theriosuchus (Atoposauridae, Crocodylomorpha) from the Late Jurassic (Kimmeridgian) of Guimarota, Portugal". Geobios. 38 (6): 779–802. doi:10.1016/j.geobios.2004.04.005. ISSN 0016-6995.  PDF
  7. ^ Daniela Schwarz; Maik Raddatz; Oliver Wings (2017). "Knoetschkesuchus langenbergensis gen. nov. sp. nov., a new atoposaurid crocodyliform from the Upper Jurassic Langenberg Quarry (Lower Saxony, northwestern Germany), and its relationships to Theriosuchus". PLoS ONE. 12 (2): e0160617. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0160617.