Mystery of the Lost Reptiles

A diverse group of Mesozoic aquatic reptiles survived the Cretaceous extinction but then dwindled during the Age of Mammals.

Evolution

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July-August 2018

Volume 106, Number 4
Page 222

DOI: 10.1511/2018.106.4.222

Although a long-overlooked group of aquatic reptiles has been extinct for 20 million years, their fossils are still providing new insights into evolution and ecology today. These animals, called choristoderes, occupy a deep side branch of the reptile’s evolutionary tree, which split off before the crocodilians and dinosaurs.

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