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Temporal range: Middle Eocene
Trionychidae - Trionyx messelianus.JPG
Palaeoamyda from Messel Pit Fossil Site at the Naturmuseum Senckenberg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Testudines
Suborder: Cryptodira
Family: Trionychidae
Subfamily: Trionychinae
Genus: Palaeoamyda
Species: P. messeliana
Binomial name
Palaeoamyda messeliana
(Reinach 1900)

Palaeoamyda is an extinct genus of softshell turtle belonging to the family Trionychidae. Remains have been found in the Eocene of Germany.


Karl (1998) considered Palaeoamyda a synonym of Rafetoides austriacus (Peters, 1858), but subsequent re-description of the material showed that it was a distinct genus in its own right.[1]


Palaeoamyda is a three-clawed soft-shell turtle that can reach a length of about two feet. It is the largest species of turtles of Messel Pit Fossil Site. The carapace and plastron are not connected by bony prominences and the plastron shows bony plates reduced to small protrusions.


  1. ^ Cadena E. (2016) Palaeoamyda messeliana nov. comb. (Testudines, Pan-Trionychidae) from the Eocene Messel Pit and Geiseltal localities, Germany, taxonomic and phylogenetic insights. PeerJ 4:e2647