Geological Magazine (Decade V)

Original Articles

II.—On a New Crocodilian Genus (Notochampsa) from the Upper Stormberg Beds of South Africa

R. Brooma1

a1 Victoria Coll., Stellenbosch.

Mr. A. L. Du Toit, of the Cape Geological Commission, who has been for some months engaged in studying the Stormberg beds in the eastern part of the Colony, has been fortunate in making a number of discoveries of very great interest to the palæontologist. Among Vertebrates his most important finds have been the remains of two small crocodiles.

The first specimen, which was discovered by Mr. A. Isted in the Cave Sandstone at Funnystone, Barkly East, consists of the impressions of the under sides of most of the upper bones of the skull and of most of the dorsal armour. There are also preserved the remains of a scapula, a humerus, a radius and ulna, a femur, and a number of ribs. A restoration of the skull is shown in Fig. 1. When complete it probably measured 130 mm. in length, and the length of the whole crocodile was probably about 600 mm. Though the skull is too imperfectly preserved to show what are the relations to the already known families, enough is preserved to show that the crocodile belongs to the suborder Amphicœlia of Owen (= Mesosuchia, Huxley). The skull is characterised by the very large size of the squamosal bones, by the moderate size of the supra-temporal openings, by the nasals taking little part in the formation of the snout, and by each maxillary having only a few large teeth—’ probably 6 or 8.