Reptile tracks (Rotodactylus) from the Middle Triassic of the Djurdjura Mountains in Algeria

Zbigniew Kotański, Gerard Gierliński, Tadeusz Ptaszyński


In 1983, during stratigraphic investigations in the Djurdjura Mountains, vertebrate tracks were discovered in the Middle Triassic Haizer-Akouker Unit at the Belvédčre (Bkherdous) locality in Algeria. The footprints are about 2 cm long and consist of impressions of four clawed digits (I-IV), plus a reverted digit V. Manus imprints were overstepped by those of the pes. Originally interpreted as lizard footprints, they have been recently diagnosed as Rotodactylus cf. bessieri Demathieu 1984. In the current literature, Rotodactylus trackmakers are regarded as a group closest to dinosaurs among stem archosaurs. The footprints demonstrate a terrestrial sedimentary regime in the Maghrebids area during the ?late Anisian.


Palaeoichnology; stratigraphy; Djurdjura Mountains; Middle Triassic; Rotodactylus; footprints

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