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Saltoposuchus

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Saltoposuchus connectens
Saltoposuchus connectens
Name Saltoposuchus connectens
Suborder Sphenosuchia
Class Sauropsida
Name Translation "leaping crocodile"
Period Upper Triassic
Location Europe
Diet Insectovore
Size 3–5 feet


Saltoposuchus connectens is an extinct species of small , long- tailed crocodylomorph reptile, from the Norian (Upper Triassic) of Europe. It has been proposed that Terrestrisuchus gracilis and Saltoposuchus connectens represent different ontogenetic stages of the same genus. In which case, the name Saltoposuchus would take precedence over Terrestrisuchus (1984). However, there is no consensus upon this yet. The front arms were short and the hind legs were long. It was clearly a swift bipedal runner, though it was probably comfortable on all four feet as well. It possessed pointed teeth and a double row of bony scutes along its back. It is not well known, though it used to enjoy some fame and was commonly referred to in popular literature as close to the ancestor of the dinosaurs, if not the ancestor of the dinosaurs. Superficially, it does resemble a small theropod and indeed, a skull of Saltoposuchus was formerly attributed to the theropod Procompsognathus. Current scientific opinion does not however consider Saltoposuchus to be ancestral to the dinosaurs. Saltoposuchus was classified in the Thecodontia, but this group is no longer considered valid (due to paraphyly). In some popular literature Saltoposuchus is erroneously referred to as a dinosaur.

Saltoposuchus is not to be confused with Saltasaurus or with Saltopus.

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