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Zverkov N.G., Averianov A.O., Popov E.V. (2017) Basicranium of an elasmosaurid plesiosaur from the Campanian of European Russia // Alcheringa: An Australasian Journal of Palaeontology. Pp. 1-15.

The braincase of elasmosaurid plesiosaurs is poorly known. Here, we describe the exceptionally well-preserved elasmosaurid basicranium from the Rybushka Formation (lower Campanian) of Saratov Province, Russia. The material provides new anatomical information and peculiar features: single anterior foramen for the cerebral carotid arteries, anteroposteriorly elongated sella turcica and deep canal on the basioccipital process. This allow us to reconstruct a carotid circulation in plesiosaurs and propose new basicranial features (anteroposteriorly elongated sella turcica and single anterior foramen for the cerebral carotids), which could be potentially synapomorphic for a clade within the Elasmosauridae.



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