Named By: P. C. Sereno & S. L. Brusatte - 2008.
Classification: Chordata, Reptilia, Dinosauria, Saurischia, Theropoda, Abelisauridae.
Species: K. palaios (type).
Size: Estimated about 6 to 7 meters long.
Known locations: Niger - Elrhaz Formation.
Time period: Aptian of the Cretaceous.
Fossil representation: Maxilla and partial post cranial skeltal remians including ribs, vertebrae and pelvis.
is a little known genus of abelisaurid
theropod dinosaur that lived in
North Africa during the Early Cretaceous. At the time of the original
description in 2008, Kryptops was considered to
be the most
primitive known abelisaurid. Kryptops was
described from a partial
maxilla (main and posterior tooth bearing bone in the upper jaw)
and associated post cranial remains. However, the maxilla was
found approximately fifteen meters away from the post cranial remains,
which has caused others to speculate that Kryptops
may be a fossil
‘chimaera’ with the post cranial fossils belonging to a different
The Kryptops holotype was found in the Elhraz Formation and another abelisaurid called Eocarcharia is known from this Formation. Other Theropods include Elaphrosaurus and the spinosaur Suchomimus. Possible prey for Kryptops could include the sauropod Nigersaurus and the ornithischians Ouranosaurus and Lurdusaurus.
- Basal abelisaurid and carcharodontosaurid theropods from the Lower Cretaceous Elrhaz Formation of Niger. - Acta Palaeontologica Polonica 53(1):15-46. - P. C. Sereno & S. L. Brusatte - 2008.
- The phylogeny of Tetanurae (Dinosauria: Theropoda). - Matthew T. Carrano, Roger B. J. Benson & Scott D. Sampson - 2012.