An amniote-like skeleton from the Early Carboniferous of Scotland

  title={An amniote-like skeleton from the Early Carboniferous of Scotland},
  author={Robert Paton and Timothy R. Smithson and Jennifer Alice Clack},
The origin of tetrapods occurred in the Late Devonian period, and the earliest known taxa were aquatic. A gap of 30 million years has separated these early forms from the first record of terrestrial tetrapods, in the Late Viséan (Early Carboniferous). Here we report the discovery of a small, highly ossified, postcranial skeleton of a terrestrially adapted, amniote-like tetrapod from the Mid Viséan; this specimen shows the earliest known pentadactyl manus. The skeleton is associated with a… 
Earliest Carboniferous tetrapod and arthropod faunas from Scotland populate Romer's Gap
It is concluded that the gap in the fossil record has been an artifact of collection failure and a series of discoveries of Tournaisian-age localities in Scotland that have yielded a wealth of new tetrapod and arthropod fossils.
Amniotes, the Origin of
Adult anatomy and patterns of development in frogs and salamanders support their origin from different families of dissorophoid labyrinthodonts, and the ancestry of amniotes apparently lies among very early anthracosaurs.
The oldest known tetrapod (Temnospondyli) from Germany (Early Carboniferous, Viséan)
A unique skull roof fragment of a relatively large-sized tetrapod of Viséan age from Chemnitz-Glösa, Saxony, is described. The specimen consists of three bones, an elongated supratemporal with a
A new Mississippian tetrapod from Fife, Scotland, and its environmental context
The discovery of a new Visean site in Fife, Scotland, of Asbian age is announced, and from it a new species of the baphetoid Spathicephalus is described, which is probably one of the earliest tetrapod groups to use suction feeding on small, aquatic prey.
An early tetrapod from ‘Romer's Gap’
Pederpes is the earliest-known tetrapod to show the beginnings of terrestrial locomotion and was at least functionally pentadactyl, bridging the temporal, morphological and phylogenetic gaps that have hitherto separated Late Devonian and mid-Carboniferous tetrapOD faunas.
Pederpes finneyae, an articulated tetrapod from the tournaisian of Western Scotland
The postcranial skeleton of Pederpes shows several unique features, including the structure of the leading edges of the cleithrum and clavicle, the form of the rib flanges and a possible supernumerary digit on the manus.
Bones, molecules, and crown- tetrapod origins
The timing of major events in the evolutionary history of early tetrapods is discussed in the light of a new cladistic analysis. The phylogenetic implications of this are compared with those of the
The postcranial anatomy of Whatcheeria deltae and its implications for the family Whatcheeriidae
The postcranial skeleton is described and the first full-body reconstruction of the early tetrapod Whatcheeria deltae from the Viséan of Iowa is presented, contributing to a revised diagnosis of the family Whatcheeriidae and a re-evaluation of fragmentary Devonian–Carboniferous fossils reported as ‘whatcheeriid’ but sharing no synapomorphies with the more precisely defined clade.
Devonian climate change, breathing, and the origin of the tetrapod stem group.
  • J. Clack
  • Environmental Science, Geography
    Integrative and comparative biology
  • 2007
The diversification of the tetrapod stem group occurred during the late Middle through the Late Devonian, that is from the Givetian to Famennian stages about 385-365 million years ago, and plant diversification was at its most rapid, changing the character of the landscape and contributing, via soils, soluble nutrients, and decaying plant matter, to anoxia in all water systems.


A new Early Carboniferous tetrapod with a mélange of crown-group characters
  • J. Clack
  • Biology, Environmental Science
  • 1998
A new taxon is described from this locality that not only combines characters of each lineage, but also represents the basal member of a third Palaeozoic group, the baphetids.
It is concluded that Araeoscelis should be classified among the captorhinomorphs, rather than as an euryapsid, that diadectids can be considered aberrant offshoots of the same stock which gave rise to typical primitive reptiles, and that pelycosaurs and romeriids share a common ancestry above the level of the limnoscelids.
The origin and early diversification of tetrapods
Devonian tetrapods were more fish-like than believed previously, whereas Lower Carboniferous tetrapod faunas contain early representatives of the amphibian and amniote lineages.
Amniote origins : completing the transition to land
This paper presents an integrated approach to the Origin of Amniotes: Completing the Transition to Land using Squared Change Parsimony at the Amniote Transition and presents a new perspective in Tetrapod Phylogeny.
The Devonian tetrapod Acanthostega gunnari Jarvik: postcranial anatomy, basal tetrapod interrelationships and patterns of skeletal evolution
Comparison between axial skeletons of primitive tetrapods suggests that plesiomorphic fish-like morphologies were re-patterned in a cranio-caudal direction with the emergence of tetrapod vertebral regionalisation.
Revision of the late Dinantian sequence in Edinburgh and West Lothian
Synopsis An appraisal of exposed sections, mainly in the Water of Leith, and of the faunas collected from them, suggests a reinterpretation of the link between the well-known sequence in the West
Westlothiana lizziae from the Viséan of East Kirkton, West Lothian, Scotland, and the amniote stem
Westlothiana lizziae is known from the Brigantian of East Kirkton, Scotland. The skull resembles that of later amniotes in the large size of the parietal, the apparent loss of the intertemporal, and
The Lower Carboniferous shrimp Tealliocaris from Gullane, East Lothian, Scotland
In the absence of oostegites Tealliocaris cannot be assigned to the order Mysidacea but its affinities lie close to these Eumalacostraca.
Shrimp-bearing sedimentary successions in the Lower Carboniferous (Dinantian) Cementstone and Oil Shale Groups of northern Britain
The Lower Carboniferous of northern Britain is dominated by non-marine sequences which yield fish and crustacean faunas. These are rarely preserved and occur in thin layers. The sedimentology of