Original paper

First evidence of the branchiosaurid temnospondyl Leptorophus in the Early Permian of the Saar-Nahe Basin (SW Germany)

Schoch, Rainer R.


A new branchiosaurid temnospondyl is described from an Early Permian lake deposit at Obermoschel, Germany. The new taxon has a triangular skull outline and shares derived features with Leptorophus, a genus formerly only known from the Permian of Saxony. The new species L. raischi is characterized by the following autapomorphies: (1) Interorbital distance narrower, with laterally concave frontal margin; (2) teeth larger, conical with strong base; (3) tabular horn larger; (4) basal plate of parasphenoid posterolaterally more bulbous; (5) palatine and ectopterygoid more robust and wide; (6) palatine ramus of pterygoid shorter; (7) base of cultriform process more slender with straight lateral margins. Phylogenetic analysis confirms that the new species forms the sister taxon to Leptorophus tener. The occurrence of Leptorophus in the Saar-Nahe Basin is consistent with the immigration of vertebrate taxa from basins in Central and Eastern Germany (Raumbach invasion).