Name: Rhachiocephalus.
Phonetic: Rak-e-o-sef-ah-lus.
Named By: Harry Govier Seeley‭ ‬-‭ ‬1898.
Synonyms: Oudenodon magnus.‭ ‬Rhachiocephalus usiliensis‭?
Classification: Chordata,‭ ‬Synapsida,‭ ‬Therapsida,‭ ‬Dicynodontia,‭ ‬Rhachiocephalidae.
Species: R.‭ ‬behemoth,‭ ‬R.‭ ‬magnus,‭ ‬R.‭ ‬whaitsi,‭ ‬R.‭ ‬rubidgei.
Diet: Herbivore.
Size: Largest species‭ (‬R.‭ ‬behemoth‭) ‬up to‭ ‬2.5‭ ‬meters long.
Known locations: South Africa.‭ ‬Tanzania‭ ‬-‭ ‬Usili Formation.
Time period: Wuchiapingian of the Permian.
Fossil representation: Partial remains of a few individuals,‭ ‬usually of the skull.

       The holotype fossils of Rhachiocephalus were originally described as a species of Oudenodon,‭ ‬O.‭ ‬magnus,‭ ‬in‭ ‬1876‭ ‬by Richard Owen.‭ ‬It was later in‭ ‬1898‭ ‬that these fossils were re-described by Harry Govier Seeley as a new genus,‭ ‬Rhachiocephalus.‭ ‬Fossils of Rhachiocephalus are currently known from both South Africa and Tanzania.‭ ‬One Tanzanian species,‭ ‬R.‭ ‬behemoth seems to have been particularly large with current known remains indicating that this species could grow to at least two and a half meters in length.

Further reading
-‭ ‬On Oudenodon‭ (‬Aulacocephalus‭) ‬pithecops from Cape Colony.‭ ‬-‭ ‬The Geological Magazine‭ ‬5:107-110.‭ ‬-‭ ‬Harry Govier Seeley‭ ‬-‭ ‬1898.
-‭ ‬Observations on Karoo vertebrates.‭ ‬Part‭ ‬1.‭ ‬The taxonomic status of Rhachiocephalus usiliensis‭ (‬von Huene,‭ ‬1942‭) (‬Therapsida,‭ ‬Dicynodont‭) ‬from the Upper Permian Kawinga Formation of Tanzania:‭ ‬Neues Jahrbuch fur Geologie und Paläontologie Monatschefte,‭ ‬1995,‭ ‬Heft‭ ‬1,‭ ‬p.‭ ‬15-28.‭ ‬-‭ ‬M.‭ ‬W.‭ ‬Maisch.
-‭ ‬Observations on Karoo and Gondwana vertebrates.‭ ‬Part‭ ‬6.‭ ‬A new rhachiocephalid dicynodont‭ (‬Threapsida‭) ‬from the Upper Permian of the Ruhuhu Basin‭ (‬Tanzania‭)‬.‭ ‬Neues Jahrbuch für Geologie und Paläontologie,‭ ‬Abhandlungen,‭ ‬v.‭ ‬237,‭ ‬n.‭ ‬3,‭ ‬p.‭ ‬313-355.‭ ‬-‭ ‬M.‭ ‬W.‭ ‬Maisch‭ ‬-‭ ‬2005.


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