Eocasea

Name: Eocasea ‭(‬Dawn Casea‭)‬.
Phonetic: E-oh-cass-e-ah.
Named By: R.‭ ‬R.‭ ‬Reisz‭ & ‬J.‭ ‬Fröbisch‭ ‬-‭ ‬2014.
Classification: Chordata,‭ ‬Syanpsida,‭ ‬Caseasauria,‭ ‬Caseidae.
Species: E.‭ ‬martini‭ (‬type‭)‬.
Diet: Uncertain,‭ ‬refer to main text.
Size: Uncertain due to lack of remains as well as the fact that only remains of a juvenile are known.
Known locations: USA,‭ ‬Kansas‭ ‬-‭ ‬Calhouns Shale Formation.
Time period: Kasimovian of the Carboniferous.
Fossil representation: Partial skull and post cranial skeleton of a juvenile.

       Eocasea is a very primitive genus of caseid synapsid that lived in North America during the Carboniferous,‭ ‬hence the name which means‭ ‘‬Dawn Casea‭’‬,‭ ‬a reference to the earlier appearance of this genus compared to the type genus of the Caseidae,‭ ‬Casea.‭ ‬Most caseid genera that are currently known to us have leaf shaped teeth for slicing through plants,‭ ‬denoting that they are all herbivores.‭ ‬Eocasea is so primitive however that the genus still has conical teeth,‭ ‬revealing the predatory meat‭ ‬eating ancestry of the group.‭ ‬It is uncertain if Eocasea ate meat,‭ ‬though it was certainly better adapted to do so.‭ ‬An alternative could be that Eocasea was already adapting to eating plants by incorporating them partially in to its diet,‭ ‬so perhaps being a partial omnivore.‭ ‬Without confirmed stomach contents it‭ ‬will continue to be very difficult to known for certain.

Further reading
-‭ ‬The oldest caseid synapsid from the Late Pennsylvanian of Kansas,‭ ‬and the evolution of herbivory in terrestrial vertebrates.‭ ‬-‭ ‬PLoS One‭ ‬9‭(‬4‭)‬:e94518.‭ ‬-‭ ‬R.‭ ‬R.‭ ‬Reisz‭ & ‬J.‭ ‬Fröbisch‭ ‬-‭ ‬2014.



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