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A tetrapod fauna from within the Devonian Antarctic Circle

Added: 07.06.2018 21:13 | 8 views | 0 comments

Until now, all known fossils of tetrapods (limbed vertebrates with digits) and near-tetrapods (such as Elpistostege, Tiktaalik, and Panderichthys) from the Devonian period have come from localities in tropical to subtropical paleolatitudes. Most are from Laurussia, a continent incorporating Europe, Greenland, and North America, with only one body fossil and one footprint locality from Australia representing the southern supercontinent Gondwana. Here we describe two previously unknown tetrapods from the Late Devonian (late Famennian) Gondwana locality of Waterloo Farm in South Africa, then located within the Antarctic Circle, which demonstrate that Devonian tetrapods were not restricted to warm environments and suggest that they may have been global in distribution.

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