|Named By:||XiaoinChun Wu in 1981|
|Time Period:||Early Triassic, 247 Ma|
|Location:||China, Shanxi Province - Heshanggou Formation|
|Size:||Nased upon proportion comparisons to similar rauisuchians, up to about 1.7 meters long|
|Fossil(s):||Skull and partial skeleton|
|Classification:||| Chordata | Reptilia | Archosauria | Crurotarsi | Rauisuchia | Paracrocodylomorpha | Poposauroidea | Ctenosauriscidae ||
Xilousuchus is an extinct genus of poposauroid from lower Triassic (Olenekian stage) deposits of Fugu County of northeastern Shanxi Province, China. It is known from the holotype, IVPP V 6026, a single well-preserved partial skeleton including the skull. It was found from the Heshanggou Formation of the Ordos Basin, Hazhen commune. It was first named by Xiao-Chun Wu in 1981 and the type species is Xilousuchus sapingensis. Wu (1981) referred Xilousuchus to the Proterosuchia. Gower and Sennikov (1996) found it to be an erythrosuchian based strictly on the braincase. A more detailed re-description of the genus was provided by Nesbitt et al. (2010) and found poposauroid affinities. In his massive revision of archosaurs which included a large cladistic analysis, Sterling J. Nesbitt (2011) found Xilousuchus to be a poposauroid which is most closely related to Arizonasaurus. Xilousuchus is the oldest archosaur to date, although Ctenosauriscus and Vytshegdosuchus might be even older by less than one million year. Since Xilousuchus is a suchian archosaur, its early age suggests that most of the major groups of archosaurs (ornithodirans, ornithosuchids, aetosaurs, and paracrocodylomorphs) developed by the Early Triassic, soon after the appearance of the first archosaur.