Karoo Palaeontology Department

Scientific articles

Current Researchers

McPhee, B. R. Benson, J. Botha-Brink, E. Bordy and J. Choiniere. 2018. A giant dinosaur from the earliest Jurassic of South Africa and the transition to quadrupedality in early sauropodomorphs. Current Biology 28: 1-9. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2018.07.063.

Legendre, L. J. and J. Botha-Brink. 2018. Digging the compromise: the functional link between bone microstructure and fossoriality in the aardvark (Orycteropus afer). PeerJ 6:e5216. DOI:  https://doi.org/10.7717/peerj.5216. PDF 4 MB

Botha-Brink, J., M. B. Soares and A. G. Martinelli. 2018. Osteohistology of Late Triassic prozostrodontian cynodonts from Brazil. PeerJ 6:e5029. DOI https://doi.org.10.7717/peerj.5029. PDF 2 MB.

Butler, E., F. Abdala andJ. Botha-Brink. 2018. Postcranial anatomy of the Early Triassic non-mammaliaform cynodont Galesaurus planiceps (Owen, 1859) from the Karoo Basin, South Africa. Papers in Palaeontology. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/spp2.1220. PDF on request

Roopnarine, P. D., K. A. Angielczyk, S. Olroyd, S. J. Nesbitt, J. Botha-Brink, B. R. Peecook, M. O. Day and R. M. H. Smith. 2018. Comparative ecological dynamics of Permian-Triassic communities from the Karoo, Luangwa and Ruhuhu basins of southern Africa; pp. 254-272 in C. A. Sidor and S. J. Nesbitt (eds.), Vertebrate and climate evolution in the Triassic rift basin of Tanzania and Zambia. Society of Vertebrate Paleontology Memoir 17. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 37(6, Supplement). DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/02724634.2018.1424714. PDF on request 

Veiga, F. H., J. Botha-Brink and M. B. Soares. 2018. Osteohistology of the non-mammaliaform traversodontids Protuberum cabralense and Exaeretodon riograndensis from southern Brazil. Historial Biology DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/08912963.2018.1441292. PDF on request

Botha-Brink, J. 2017. Burrowing in Lystrosaurus: preadaptation to a postextinction environment? Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 37(5): e1365080. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/02724634.2017.1365080. PDF on request

Codron, J., J. Botha-Brink, D. Codron, A. Huttenlocker and K. Angielczyk. 2017. Predator prey interactions among Permo-Triassic terrestrial vertebrates as a deterministic factor influencing faunal collapse and turnover. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 30(1):40-54. DOI: 10.1111/jeb.12983. PDF on request

Legendre, L. J., G. Guénard, J. Botha-Brink and J. Cubo. 2016. Palaeohistological evidence for ancestral endothermy in archosaurs. Systematic Biology DOI: 10.1093/sysbio/syw033. PDF on request

Lyson, T. R., B. S. Rubidge, T. M. Scheyer, K. de Queiroz, E. R. Schachner, R. M. H. Smith and J. Botha-Brink. 2016. Fossorial origin of the turtle shell. Current Biology 26:1-8. DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2016.05.020. PDF on request

Botha-Brink, J., D. Codron, A. K. Huttenlocker, K. D. Angielczyk and M. Ruta. 2016. Breeding young as a survival strategy during Earth's greatest mass extinction. Scientific Reports. 6: 24053. PDF 1.3 MB. PDF SUPP 4.7 MB. Excel SUPP: http://www.nature.com/articles/srep24053.

Ecker, M., J. Botha-Brink, J. A. Lee-Thorp and L. K. Horwitz. 2015. Ostrich eggshell as a source of palaeoenvironmental information in the arid interior of South Africa; pp. 95-111 in J. Runge (ed.), Changing climates, ecosystems and environments within arid southern Africa and adjoining regions: Palaeoecology of Africa 33. CRC Press, Florence, Kentucky, 228 pp. PDF on request

Lyson, T. R., T. M. Scheyer, E. Schachner, J. Botha-Brink, G. S. Bever, K. de Queiroz,C. Farmer, B. S. Rubidge and J. A. Gauthier. 2014. Fossorial ancestry in the origin of turtles? Insights into the origin of the turtle lung ventilation mechanism and their shell. Nature Communications 5:5211 DOI: 10.1038/ncomms6211. PDF on request

Gower, D. J., R. J. Butler, A. G. Sennikov, J. Hancox and J. Botha-Brink2014. A new species of Garjainia ochev, 1958 (Diapsida: Archosauriformes: Erythrosuchidae) from the Early Triassic of South Africa. PLoS ONE 9: 11: e111154. PDF 1.8 MB

Smith, R. M. H. and J. Botha-Brink2014. Sedimentological and taphonomic evidence for drought-induced die-offs during the Permo-Triassic mass extinction in the main Karoo Basin, South Africa. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 312: 40-53.  PDF 2.9 MB SUPP 155 KB

Huttenlocker, A. K. and J Botha-Brink. 2014. Growth patterns and the evolution of bone microstructure in permo-Triassic therocephalians (Amniota, Therapsida) of South Africa. PeerJ 2:e325; DOI 10.7717/peerj.325. PDF 1.1 MB SUPP 243 KB

Botha-Brink, J., A. K. Huttenlocker, and S. P. Modesto. 2014. Vertebrate Paleontology of Nooitgedacht 68: A Lystrosaurus maccaigi-rich Permo-Triassic boundary locality in South Africa in pp. 289-304. C. F. Kammerer, K. D. Angielczyk, and J. Fröbisch (eds.), The Early Evolutionary History of the Synapsida. Springer, Dordrecht, Netherlands. PDF 2.2 MB

MacDougall, M. J., S. P. Modesto and J Botha-Brink. 2013. The postcranial skeleton of the Early Triassic parareptile Sauropareion anoplus, with a discussion of possible life history. Acta Palaeontologica Polonica 58(4).

Ruta, M., J. Botha-Brink, S. A. Mitchell and M. J. Benton. 2013. The radiation of cynodonts and the ground plan of mammalian morphological diversity. Proceedings of the Royal Society B 280. http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2013.1865. PDF 1.2 MB  SUPP Methods & Results  SUPP files S1-S12

Huttenlocker, A. K. and J. Botha-Brink. 2013. Body size and growth patterns in the therocephalian Moschorhinus kitchingi (Therapsida: Eutheriodontia) before and after the end-Permian extinction in South Africa. Paleobiology 39: 253-277. PDF on request

Botha-Brink, J. and R. M. H. Smith. 2012. Palaeobiology of Triassic procolophonids inferred from bone microstructure. Comptes Rendus Palevol 11: 419-433. PDF 3.5 MB

Botha-Brink, J., F. Abdala and A. Chinsamy. 2012. Paleobiology and radiation of Permo-Jurassic non-mammaliaform cynodonts; pp. 223-246 in A. Chinsamy-Turan (ed.), The biology of non-mammalian therapsids: insights from bone microstructure. Indiana University Press, Bloomington, 360 pp.

Ray, S., J. Botha-Brink, and A. Chinsamy. 2012. Dicynodont growth dynamics and lifestyle adaptations; pp. 121-146 in A. Chinsamy-Turan (ed.), The biology of non-mammalian therapsids: insights from bone microstructure. Indiana University Press, Bloomington, 360 pp.

Smith, R. M. H. and J. Botha-Brink. 2011. Morphology and composition of bone-bearing coprolites from the Late Permian Beaufort Group, Karoo Basin, South Africa. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 312: 40-53. PDF on request

Botha-Brink, J and R. M. H. Smith. 2011. Osteohistology of the Triassic archosauromorphs Prolacerta, Proterosuchus, Erythrosuchus and Euparkeria from the Karoo Basin of South Africa. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 31(6): 1238-1254. PDF 1.68 MB

Botha-Brink, J. and S. P. Modesto. 2011. A new specimen of the therocephalian synapsid Olivierosuchus parringtoni from the Lower Triassic South African Karoo Basin. Palaeontology 54: 591-606.  PDF 1.3 MB

Botha-Brink, J. and K. D. Angielczyk. 2010. Do extraordinarily high growth rates in Permo-Triassic dicynodonts (Therapsida, Anomodontia) explain their success before and after the end-Permian extinction? Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 160: 341-365 PDF on request

Botha-Brink, J. 2010. Comments on the proposed precedence of Procynosuchus Broom, 1937 (Therapsida, Cynodontia) over Cyrbasiodon Broom, 1931 and Parathrinaxodon Parrington, 1936.Bulletin of Zoological Nomenclature 67(1): 95. PDF 46 KB

Modesto, S. P., D. M. Scott, J. Botha-Brink and R. R. Reisz. 2010. A new and unusual procolophonid parareptile from the Lower Triassic Katberg Formation of South Africa. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 30(3): 715-723. PDF 3.3Mb

Modesto, S. P. and J. Botha-Brink. 2010. A burrow cast with Lystrosaurus skeletal remains from the Lower Triassic of South Africa. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology. 25: 274-281.PDF 2.7Mb

Modesto, S. P. and J. Botha-Brink. 2010. Problems of correlation of South African and South American tetrapod faunas across the Permian-Triassic boundary. Journal of African Earth Sciences. 52: 242-248.PDF 619 KB

Botha-Brink, J. and S. P. Modesto. 2009. Anatomy and relationships of the Middle Permian varanopid Heleosaurus scholtzi based on a social aggregation from the Karoo Basin of South Africa. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology. 29(2): 389-400. PDF 2.5Mb

Modesto, S. and J. Botha-Brink. 2008. A new archosauriform reptile from the Lower Triassic Lystrosaurus Assemblage Zone of South Africa. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 28(3): 914-917 PDF 445 KB

Botha-Brink, J. and F. Abdala. 2008. A new cynodont record from the Tropidostoma Assemblage Zone of the Beaufort Group: implications for the early diversity of cynodonts in South Africa. Palaeontologia Africana 43: 1-6.PDF 688 KB

Botha-Brink, J. and S. Modesto. 2007. A mixed-age classed ‘pelycosaur’ aggregation from South Africa: earliest evidence of parental care in amniotes? Proceedings of the Royal Society of London B 274: 2829-2834.PDF 548 KB

Botha, J. and K. Angielczyk. 2007. An integrative approach to distinguishing the Late Permian dicynodont species Oudenodon bainii and Tropidostoma microtrema (Therapsida: Anomodontia). Palaeontology. 50(5): 1175-1209.PDF 1.4Mb

Botha, J. and T. Gaudin. 2007. An early Pliocene pangolin (Mammalia: Pholidota) from Langebaanweg, South Africa. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology. 27(2): 484-491.PDF 721 KB

Botha, J., S. Modesto and R. Smith. 2007. A specimen of the procolophonoid reptile Sauropareion anoplus from the Katberg Formation of South Africa. South African Journal of Science. 103: 54-56.PDF 605 KB

Botha, J. and R. Smith. 2007. Lystrosaurus species composition across the Permo-Triassic boundary of South Africa. Lethaia. 40(2): 125-137.PDF 421 KB

Botha, J., F. Abdala and R. Smith. 2007. The oldest cynodont: new clues on the origin and diversification of Cynodontia. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 149: 477-492.PDF 430 KB

Botha, J. and R. Smith. 2006. Rapid vertebrate recuperation in the Karoo Basin of South Africa following the end-Permian extinction. Journal of African Earth Sciences 45 (4-5): 502-514.PDF 993 KB

Smith, R. and J. Botha. 2005. The recovery of terrestrial vertebrate diversity in the South African Karoo Basin after the End-Permian extinction. Comptes Rendus Palevol 4: 555-568.PDF 635 KB

Botha, J., J. Lee-Thorp and A. Chinsamy. 2005. The palaeoecology of the non-mammalian cynodonts Diademodon and Cynognathus from the Karoo Basin of South Africa, using stable light isotope analysis. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 223: 303-316.PDF 234 KB

Botha, J. and A. Chinsamy. 2005. Growth patterns of Thrinaxodon, a non-mammalian cynodont from the Early Triassic of South Africa. Palaeontology 48: 385-394.PDF 542 KB

Ward, P. D., J. Botha, R. Buick, M. O. de Kock, D. H. Erwin, G. Garrison, J. Kirschvink and R. Smith. 2005. Abrupt and gradual extinction among land vertebrates in South Africa: Evidence against a K/P-type impact extinction at the end of the Permian. Science 307: 709-713.PDF 371 KB

Botha, J. and A. Chinsamy. 2004. Growth and lifestyle adaptations of the Triassic non-mammalian cynodont Trirachodon. Acta Palaeontologica Polonica 49(4): 619-627.PDF 613 KB

Ray, S., J. Botha and A. Chinsamy. 2004. Bone histology and growth patterns of some non-mammalian therapsids. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 24(3): 634-648.PDF 849 KB

Botha, J., J. Lee-Thorp and M. Sponheimer. 2004. An examination of Triassic cynodont tooth enamel chemistry using Fourier Transform Infrared spectroscopy. Calcified Tissue International 74(2): 162-169.PDF 155 KB

Botha, J. 2003. Biological aspects of the Permian dicynodont Oudenodon (Therapsida, Dicynodontia), deduced from bone histology and cross-sectional geometry. Palaeontologia Africana 39: 37-44.PDF 3.4Mb

Botha, J. and A. Chinsamy. 2000. Growth patterns deduced from the bone histology of the cynodonts Diademodon and Cynognathus. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 20 (4): 705-711.PDF 595 Kb