A Reappraisal of the Purported Gastric Pellet with Pterosaurian Bones from the Upper Triassic of Italy
Borja Holgado , Fabio Marco Dalla Vecchia, Josep Fortuny, Federico Bernardini, Claudio Tuniz
Published: November 11, 2015
A small accumulation of bones from the Norian (Upper Triassic) of the Seazza Brook Valley (Carnic Prealps, Northern Italy) was originally (1989) identified as a gastric pellet made of pterosaur skeletal elements. The specimen has been reported in literature as one of the very few cases of gastric ejecta containing pterosaur bones since then. However, the detailed analysis of the bones preserved in the pellet, their study by X-ray microCT, and the comparison with those of basal pterosaurs do not support a referral to the Pterosauria. Comparison with the osteology of a large sample of Middle-Late Triassic reptiles shows some affinity with the protorosaurians, mainly with Langobardisaurus pandolfii that was found in the same formation as the pellet. However, differences with this species suggest that the bones belong to a similar but distinct taxon. The interpretation as a gastric pellet is confirmed.
Citation: Holgado B, Dalla Vecchia FM, Fortuny J, Bernardini F, Tuniz C (2015) A Reappraisal of the Purported Gastric Pellet with Pterosaurian Bones from the Upper Triassic of Italy. PLoS ONE 10(11): e0141275. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0141275
Editor: Brian Lee Beatty, New York Institute of Technology College of Osteopathic Medicine, UNITED STATES
Received: June 25, 2015; Accepted: October 5, 2015; Published: November 11, 2015
Copyright: © 2015 Holgado et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited
Data Availability: All relevant data are within the paper.
Funding: The authors received no specific funding for this work.
Competing interests: The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.
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