In this family a number of imperfect skulls are known to constitute a family of small advanced herbivorous dinocephalians with the retention of a moderate canine. Characteristic are the prominent posteriorly directed tabular bosses. Weak conical incisors and canine and a long series of postcanines; the palatal teeth are very well developed, even on the vomer. All known forms constitute a single species, Styracocephalus platyrhynchus Haughton 1929, from the Tapinocephalus Zone Beaufort Beds, Beaufort West, Karoo, South Africa. These animals are similiar to both the Brithopodids and the Estemmenosuchids, and may have evolved from either family.
Ecological niche: large to very semi-aquatic to terrestrial herbivores
Modern equivalent: hippo???
Time: middle Permian ( Wordian epoch)
Distribution: although so far fossil remains are known only from eastern Russia it is likely these animals had a much wider, probably worldwide ( Pangea) distribution
preferred food: plants
length: about 4.5 meters
weight: upto 500 kg
Metabolism: partially endothermic? gigantotherms (Homeotherms)
Ancestor: herbivorous Brithopodids or Estemmenosuchids?
Replaced by: Large Dicynodonts and Pareiasaurs???
Descendents: hypothetical Wordian proto-Styracocephalids gave rise to hypothetical Wordian proto-Titanosuchids
Taxonomic status - Family
|some Links and References|
L. D. Boonstra, "The Fauna of the Tapinocephalus Zone (Beaufort Beds of the Karoo)", Annals of the South African Museum, 56 (1) 1969, pp. 1-73
Gillian M. King, "Anomodontia" Part 17 C, Encyclopedia of Paleoherpetology, Gutsav Fischer Verlag, Stuttgart and New York, 1988
Palaeos Page (incorporates some of this material, plus a lot of additional material)