A new specimen of Dicynodon traquairi (Newton) (Synapsida: Anomodontia) from the Late Permian (Tartarian) of northern Scotland
Cruickshank, Arthur R. I.
Clark, Neil D. L.
BERNARD PRICE INSTITUTE FOR PALAEONTOLOGICAL RESEARCH
A recently discovered natural mould of a complete, almost undistorted, skull and lower jaw of a dicynodont (c. 237mmoverall length), in a block of Upper Permian sandstone (= Dicynodon Assemblage Zone: Hopeman Sandstone Formation) from Clashach Quarry, Hopeman, Morayshire, is described using novel techniques, including Computed Tomography scanning (CT), Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and rapid-prototype modelling. It is assigned to the taxon Dicynodon traquairi (Newton, 1893). When compared with Dicynodon lacerticeps Owen, 1845, it is distinguished principally by having the pineal opening sunk deeply between the diverging parietals, subparallel pterygoid rami narrowly separated, with no transverse flanges, and in addition, a deeply grooved lower jaw symphysis. The southern African fauna lived on river flats in a higher (southern) palaeolatitude than the possibly desert-dwelling Scottish species. The Hopeman Sandstone Formation is of the same age as the better-known Cutties Hillock Sandstone Formation, whose fauna is briefly discussed and reviewed.