Smilosuchus gregorii was a top predator in a rich environment, as preserved by the Chinle Formation. The Chinle formation is the result of Late Triassic (221.5 to 205.6 million years ago) deposition of aquatic sediments. This could have included fluvial sediments, deposited by by river or stream, lacustrine sediments, deposited by lake, and flood sediments (1). This diverse assemblage contains a range of taxa, including early archosaurs, dinosaurs, phytosaurs, and crocodylomorphs (2). During this time period, the first representatives of many modern groups first appeared in the fossil record, such as dinosaurs and mammals (3). The climate throughout most of the Triassic was very hot and dry, though by the time S. gregorii evolved, there was a shift toward higher levels of humidity (4).
- 1. Lucas, Spencer G., et al. "Stratigraphy of the Upper Triassic Chinle group, four corners region." New Mexico Geological Society Guidebook 48 (1997): 81-107.
- 2. Benton, M.J. “Dinosaur success in the Triassic: a noncompetitive ecological model.” Quarterly Review of Biology (1983). 58:29-55.
- 3. Benton, M. J. (1993). "Late triassic extinctions and the origin of the dinosaurs." Science 260(5109): 769-770.
- 4. Galfetti, Thomas, et al. "Late Early Triassic climate change: insights from carbonate carbon isotopes, sedimentary evolution and ammonoid paleobiogeography." Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 243.3 (2007): 394-411.
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