Anteosaurus

An illustration of an extinct animal distantly related to modern mammals. It has a dinosaur-like head with short horns above its eyes, a chunky body with a short thick tail, and four semi-sprawling clawed legs.

Anteosaurus magnificus, a dinocephalian from the Middle Permian of South Africa (~266-260 mya). Known from several skulls and fragments of the rest of the skeleton, it was one of the largest carnivorous non-mammalian synapsids with an estimated body length of at least 5m (16′4″).

The skull of Anteosaurus [image source]

It had patches of thickened bone above its eyes forming a pair of short “horns”, as well as heavily reinforced areas around its skull roof and the sides of its lower jaw. These were probably used for head-butting behaviors, and similar adaptations are seen in other groups of dinocephalians.

The front part of its mouth was also prominently upturned, and it had enlarged “sabretooth” fangs – although these features are covered by lips in my reconstruction.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.