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Superregnum: Eukaryota
Cladus: Unikonta
Cladus: Opisthokonta
Cladus: Holozoa
Regnum: Animalia
Subregnum: Eumetazoa
Cladus: Bilateria
Cladus: Nephrozoa
Superphylum: Deuterostomia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Infraphylum: Gnathostomata
Megaclassis: Osteichthyes
Cladus: Sarcopterygii
Cladus: Rhipidistia
Cladus: Tetrapodomorpha
Cladus: Eotetrapodiformes
Cladus: Elpistostegalia
Superclassis: Tetrapoda
Cladus: Reptiliomorpha
Cladus: Amniota
Classis: Reptilia
Cladus: Eureptilia
Cladus: Romeriida
Subclassis: Diapsida
Cladus: Sauria
Infraclassis: Archosauromorpha
Cladus: Crurotarsi
Divisio: Archosauria
Subsectio: Pseudosuchia
Cladus: Suchia
Cladus: Paracrocodylomorpha
Cladus: Loricata
Superordo: Crocodylomorpha
Ordo: Crocodilia
Cladus: Mesoeucrocodylia
Cladus: Neosuchia
Subordo: Eusuchia

Familia: Gavialidae
Genus: Gavialis
Species (5): G. gangeticus – †G. bengawanicus – †G. breviceps – †G. curvirostris – †G. lewisi

Gavialis Oppel, 1811

Primary references

Ordn. Fam. Gatt. Rept.:19.


Martin, J.E. et al. 2012: Gavialis from the Pleistocene of Thailand and its relevance for drainage connections from India to Java. PLoS ONE, 7(9): e44541. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0044541

Vernacular names
Deutsch: Gaviale
English: Gharial
suomi: Gaviaali
hrvatski: Gavijal
Nederlands: Gavialen
norsk: Gangesgavial
português: Gavial
svenska: Gavial
ไทย: ตะโขงแท้, ตะโขง

Gavialis is a genus of crocodylians that includes the living gharial Gavialis gangeticus and one known extinct species, Gavialis bengawanicus.[1] G. gangeticus comes from the Indian Subcontinent,[2] while G. bengawanicus is known from Java. Gavialis likely first appeared in the Indian Subcontinent in the Pliocene and dispersed into the Malay Archipelago through a path called the Siva–Malayan route in the Quaternary. Remains attributed to Gavialis have also been found on Sulawesi and Woodlark Island east of the Wallace Line, suggesting a prehistoric lineage of Gavialis was able to traverse marine environments and reach places possibly as far as western Oceania.[3]

The genus Gavialis was reevaluated in 2018 based on specimens in the Natural History Museum, London that were collected in the Sivalik Hills. The author concluded that G. gangeticus and G. bengawanicus are the only two species in the genus Gavialis, with G. hysudricus as a junior synonym of G. gangeticus. Rhamphosuchus is proposed to include G. leptodus, G. pachyrhynchus, G. curvirostris and G. breviceps. The species G. browni and G. lewisi require further revisions.[1] G. dixoni has been assigned its own genus, Dollosuchus.[4]

The below cladogram of the major extant crocodile groups is based on the latest molecular studies, and shows the gharial's close relationship to the false gharial, and how the gavialids and crocodiles are more closely related than the alligatoroids:[5][6][7][8][9]















Here is a more detailed cladogram that shows Gavialis's proposed placement within Gavialidae, including extinct members:[8]


Gavialis gangeticus Gharial

Gavialis bengawanicus

Gavialis browni

Gryposuchus colombianus


Gryposuchus pachakamue






Tomistoma lusitanica

Tomistoma schlegelii False gharial


Martin, J. E. (2018). "The taxonomic content of the genus Gavialis from the Siwalik Hills of India and Pakistan" (PDF). Papers in Palaeontology. 5 (3): 483–497. doi:10.1002/spp2.1247.
Lull, R. S. (1944). "Fossil gavials from north India". American Journal of Science. 242 (8): 417–430. doi:10.2475/ajs.242.8.417.
Delfino, M.; De Vos, J. (2010). "A revision of the Dubois crocodylians, Gavialis bengawanicus and Crocodylus ossifragus, from the Pleistocene Homo erectus beds of Java". Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology. 30 (2): 427. doi:10.1080/02724631003617910. S2CID 86396515.
Swinton, W. E. (1937). "The crocodile of Maransart (Dollosuchus dixoni [Owen])". Mémoires du Musée d'Histoire Naturelle de Belgique. 80: 1–44.
Harshman, J.; Huddleston, C. J.; Bollback, J. P.; Parsons, T. J.; Braun, M. J. (2003). "True and false gharials: A nuclear gene phylogeny of crocodylia" (PDF). Systematic Biology. 52 (3): 386–402. doi:10.1080/10635150309323. PMID 12775527.
Gatesy, J.; Amato, G. (2008). "The rapid accumulation of consistent molecular support for intergeneric crocodylian relationships". Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 48 (3): 1232–1237. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2008.02.009. PMID 18372192.
Erickson, G. M.; Gignac, P. M.; Steppan, S. J.; Lappin, A. K.; Vliet, K. A.; Brueggen, J. A.; Inouye, B. D.; Kledzik, D. & Webb, G. J. W. (2012). "Insights into the ecology and evolutionary success of crocodilians revealed through bite-force and tooth-pressure experimentation". PLOS ONE. 7 (3): e31781. Bibcode:2012PLoSO...731781E. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0031781. PMC 3303775. PMID 22431965.
Michael S. Y. Lee; Adam M. Yates (27 June 2018). "Tip-dating and homoplasy: reconciling the shallow molecular divergences of modern gharials with their long fossil". Proceedings of the Royal Society B. 285 (1881). doi:10.1098/rspb.2018.1071. PMC 6030529. PMID 30051855.
Hekkala, E.; Gatesy, J.; Narechania, A.; Meredith, R.; Russello, M.; Aardema, M. L.; Jensen, E.; Montanari, S.; Brochu, C.; Norell, M.; Amato, G. (2021-04-27). "Paleogenomics illuminates the evolutionary history of the extinct Holocene "horned" crocodile of Madagascar, Voay robustus". Communications Biology. 4 (1): 505. doi:10.1038/s42003-021-02017-0. ISSN 2399-3642. PMC 8079395. PMID 33907305.

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