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Paleontologists discover Triassic reptile in China

A new reptile species from the Triassic period has been discovered in China.

The Hupehsuchia group has previously been found in two counties of China's Hubei province. But the Hupehsuchia group generally has long necks, with nine to 10 cervical vertebrae. So when scientists discovered the remains of a similar animals with just six cervical vertebrae, they determined it was a new species entirely. Aside from its short neck, the Eohupehsuchus brevicollis is also distinguished from its relatives by its skull shape and narrow forehead.

The new species, Eohupehsuchus brevicollis, is described in the journal PLOS ONE by researchers at the Wuhan Centre of China Geological Survey. The specimen is "incomplete," with broken digits and part of its forelimb missing, but it will still help scientists better understand Triassic marine life.