A new fauna of late Early to early Middle Triassic vertebrates has been found in the upper member of the Fremouw Formation in the Beardmore Glacier area of Antarctica. It includes Cynognathus, a kannmeyeriid, and other therapsid (mammal-like) reptiles representing new, more derived genera of carnivorous and gomphodont cynodonts. New genera of temnospondyl amphibians belonging to the capitosauroid evolutionary complex also occur. The unusual abundance of well-preserved amphibians may offer new insights concerning the evolution and distribution patterns of early Mesozoic temnospondyls. These fossils represent only the second terrestrial vertebrate fauna from the mainland of Antarctica. The fossils occur on a prominent sandstone platform, which represents part of the exhumed channel of a braided stream deposit. The platform is over 200 metres above the well-known Lystrosaurus fauna of the lower Fremouw Formation. The locality is near the axis of a major foreland basin that paralleled the present trend of the Transantarctic Mountains. Conditions of rapid subsidence and aggradation of fluvial units were ideal for the preservation of vertebrate faunas.
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