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6251Arpadosaurus - A Lizard of the Eocene

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  • Neal Robbins
    Nov 19, 2013
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          Arpadosaurus was a genus of lizards that lived during the Eocene. The systematic paleontology of Arpadosaurus is:
       
      Reptilia Laurenti 1768
      Squamata Oppel 1811
      Anguimorpha Furbringer 1900
      Anguidae Gray 1825
      Glyptosaurinae Marsh 1872
      Melanosaurini Sullivan 1979
      Arpadosaurus Meszoely 1970
      A. gazinorum Meszoely 1970
      A. sepulchralis Smith and Gauthier 2013
       
          Krister T. Smith and Jacques A.Gauthier wrote an article titled Early Eocene Lizards of the Wasatch Formation near Bitter Creek, Wyoming: Diversity and Paleoenvironment during Interval of Global Warming. It was published in 2013 in the Bulletin of the Peabody Museum of Natural History 54(2): 135-230. This quote from the abstract says:
       
      Lizards (nonophidian squamates) from a vertical series of localities in the early Eocene Wasatch Formation (Washakie Basin, Wyoming, USA) deposited during an interval of global warming are described on the basis of isolated cranial and some postcranial bones. At least 24 species are present. New material supports a close relationship of the iguanid Paranolis to Anolis (to the exclusion of Anolbanolis). Records of Tinosaurus and Scincoideus are the earliest in North America; a potential affinity of the latter, a new species with Lacertidae is explored. A new species of Palaeoxan tusia and two new species related to Neotropical Night Lizards, Lepidophyma, are named. A rhineurid amphisbaenian is present. New material of Apodosauriscus minutus further bolsters the case for its relationship to living Anniella. Glyptosaurine anguids are also present, including new species referred to Xestops, Arpadosaurus, and Glyptosaurus, the last with distinctive crushing posterior teeth. A distinctive new anguimorph lineage, Entomophontes, may be related to Xenosaurus. Considerable cranial material is referred to a new species of Provaranosaurus; we argue that this lineage is closely related to extant Shinisaurus. Restes-like remains are smaller and rare. Helodermatidae is represented by a single osteoderm. The varanid Saniwa is present. The four localities examined here record an interval of warming in the Rocky Mountain interior, when temperatures rose toward their Cenozoic acme in the Eocene Climatic Optimum. Faunal composition shows only two major deviations at a higher taxonomic level, suggesting a prevailing stability. Maximum within-locality species diversity (richness), based on cranial material (18 species), is seen at the top of the section. The diversity difference between the upper and lower part of the section is statistically significant. There is an underlying component of noise to the diversity data with regard to rarer taxa. Diversity changes primarily as a result of dispersal on a local level. 
       
          Neal Robbins