Postosuchus

Name: Postosuchus‭ (‬Crocodile from Post‭).
Phonetic: ‭P‬oest-oh-sook-us.
Named By: Sankar Chatterjee‭ ‬-‭ ‬1985.
Classification: Chordata,‭ ‬Reptilia,‭ ‬Diapsida,‭ ‬Rauisuchia,‭ ‬Rauisuchidae.
Species: P.‭ ‬kirkpatricki,‭ ‬P.‭ ‬alisonae.
Diet: Carnivore.
Size: 4-5‭ ‬meters long.
Known locations: Across the USA,‭ ‬Specifically found in Arizona,‭ ‬New Mexico,‭ ‬North Carolina and Texas.
Time period: Carnian to the Norian of the Triassic.
Fossil representation: Many fossils including articulated skeletons.

       With a tough hide and powerful jaws,‭ the rauisuchian genus ‬Postosuchus was one of the apex predators of its time.‭ ‬First discovered in the US state of Texas,‭ ‬Postsuchus had a wide distribution that stretched all the way to the Eastern seaboard.
       The head was deep with many fenestrae,‭ ‬adaptations that point towards powerful biting muscles.‭ ‬The teeth were serrated and large growing to at least‭ ‬seven‭ ‬centimetres.‭ ‬Fossil evidence suggests that Postosuchus also had a Vomeronasal organ,‭ ‬an auxiliary organ for smell. The hide appears to have been armoured with preserved specimens displaying evidence of osteoderms which would give Postosuchus a crocodilian appearance.
       The forelimbs on Postosuchus are a little over half of the total length of the rear legs and this has led to a lot of speculation as to whether Postosuchus was bipedal or quadrapedal.‭ ‬The tough hide and large jaws carried forward of the hips would have required plenty of support for long distance travel.‭ ‬Further the pectoral girdle was strong suggesting a weight bearing function.‭ ‬The rear feet however are larger than the fore suggesting that more weight was carried on them than the front.‭ ‬It is possible that Postosuchus may have been both bipedal and quadrupedal depending on the situation.‭ ‬It may even have been a predatory adaptation allowing it to rear up high and bite into the neck or spine of its prey.

Further reading
- Postosuchus, a new thecodontian reptile from the Triassic of Texas and the origin of tyrannosaurs - Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London, Series B: Biological Sciences 309(1139):395-460 - S. Chatterjee - 1985.
- Late Triassic (Carnian and Norian) tetrapods from the southwestern United States - New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science, Bulletin 4: 1–254. - Robert A. Long & Ohillip Murry - 1995.
- Osteology and relationships of Postosuchus kirkpatricki (Archosauria: Crurotarsi) - M.S. thesis, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, Texas. - Jonathan C. Weinbaum - 2002.
- A new specimen of Postosuchus from the Late Triassic Coelophysis Quarry, siltstone member, Chinle Formation, Ghost Ranch, New Mexico - M.S. thesis, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina. - Stephanie E. novak - 2004.
- A new suchian archosaur from the Upper Triassic of North Carolina. - Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 28(2):363-381 - K. Peyer, J. G. Carter, H. Sues, S. E. Novak & P. E. Olsen - 2008.



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