Pedro L. Godoy

Pedro L. Godoy

Researcher, Paleontologist

I am a vertebrate paleontologist and evolutionary biologist working on the evolution of reptiles in deep time. I am currently affiliated with Dr. Alan Turner’s lab as an honorary researcher.

My research interests include macroevolution and systematics of archosaurs and other reptiles. More specifically, my research has focused on the evolution of Crocodylomorpha, the >200-million-year old group that includes living crocodylians (crocodiles, alligators, caimans and gharials) and their extinct relatives.

In 2021, I worked as a Capes “Young Talent” Postdoctoral Fellow at the Federal University of Paraná (Brazil), working with Dr. Marcio Pie. From 2019 to 2021, I was an NSF postdoc at the Department of Anatomical Sciences, Stony Brook University, in collaboration with Dr. Alan Turner. During my PhD, I worked at the University of Birmingham, under the supervision of Prof. Richard Butler. During both my MSc and BSc degrees, I was supervised by Dr. Max Langer.

  • Evolutionary Biology
  • Paleobiology
  • Macroevolution
  • Systematics
  • PhD in Earth Sciences, 2018

    University of Birmingham, UK

  • MSc in Comparative Biology, 2014

    University of São Paulo, Brazil

  • BSc in Biological Sciences, 2011

    University of São Paulo, Brazil


Research papers and book chapters

[13] Dunne E, Farnsworth A, Benson RBJ, Godoy PL, Greene SE, Valdes P, Lunt DJ, Butler RJ (2022). Climatic controls on the ecological ascendancy of dinosaurs. Submitted.

[12] Langer MC†, Godoy PL† (2022). So volcanoes created the dinosaurs? A quantitative characterization of the early evolution of terrestrial Pan-Aves. Accepted. Frontiers in Earth Science. (†Joint lead authors)

[11] Bestwick J, Godoy PL, Maidment, SCR, Ezcurra MD, Wroe M, Raven TJ, Bonsor, JA, Butler RJ (2022). Relative skull size evolution in Mesozoic archosauromorphs: potential drivers and morphological uniqueness of erythrosuchid archosauriforms. Accepted. Palaeontology.

[10] Benson RBJ, Godoy PL, Bronzati M, Butler RJ, Gearty W. (2022). Reconstructed evolutionary patterns for crocodile-line archosaurs demonstrate impact of failure to log-transform body size data. Communications Biology, 5, 171. [Preprint] [PDF]

[09] Godoy PL, Turner AH. (2020). Body size evolution in crocodylians and their extinct relatives. In: eLS, 1, 442–452. [PDF]

[08] Godoy PL, Cidade GM, Montefeltro FC, Langer MC, Norell MA. (2020). Redescription and phylogenetic affinities of the caimanine Eocaiman cavernensis (Crocodylia, Alligatoroidea) from the Eocene of Argentina. Papers in Palaeontology, 7, 1205–1231. [PDF] [Prize]

[07] Montefeltro FC, Lautenschlager S, Godoy PL, Ferreira GS, Butler RJ. (2020). A unique predator in a unique ecosystem: modelling the apex predator from the Late Cretaceous crocodyliform-dominated fauna in Brazil. Journal of Anatomy, 237, 323–333. [Preprint] [PDF] [Recognition]

[06] Godoy PL. (2019). Crocodylomorph cranial shape evolution and its relationship with body size and ecology. Journal of Evolutionary Biology, 33, 4–21. [Preprint] [PDF] [Recognition]

[05] Godoy PL, Benson RBJ, Bronzati M, Butler RJ. (2019). The multi-peak adaptive landscape of crocodylomorph body size evolution. BMC Evolutionary Biology, 19, 167. [Preprint] [PDF]

[04] Mannion PD, Chiarenza AA, Godoy PL, Cheah YN. (2019). Spatiotemporal sampling patterns in the 230 million year fossil record of terrestrial crocodylomorphs and their impact on diversity. Palaeontology, 62, 615–637. [PDF]

[03] Godoy PL, Ferreira GS, Montefeltro FC, Vila Nova BC, Butler RJ, Langer MC. (2018). Evidence for heterochrony in the cranial evolution of fossil crocodyliforms. Palaeontology, 61, 543–558. [PDF] [Coverage]

[02] Godoy PL†, Bronzati M†, Eltink E, Marsola JCA, Cidade GM, Langer MC, Montefeltro FC. (2016). Postcranial anatomy of Pissarrachampsa sera (Crocodyliformes, Baurusuchidae) from the Late Cretaceous of Brazil: insights on lifestyle and phylogenetic significance. PeerJ, 4, e2075. (†Joint lead authors). [PDF] [Coverage]

[01] Godoy PL, Montefeltro FC, Norell MA, Langer MC. (2014). An additional baurusuchid from the Cretaceous of Brazil with evidence of interspecific predation among Crocodyliformes. PLoS ONE, 9, e97138. [PDF] [Coverage] [Recognition]

Science Communication and Outreach

[03] Godoy PL. (2019) Climate change created today’s large crocodiles. The Conversation.

[02] Benson RBJ, Godoy PL. (2019). Evolution: much on the menu for ancient crocs. Current Biology, 29, PR683–R685. [PDF]

[01] Godoy PL, Ferreira GS, Dassie ECG, Corrêa ACM, Hsiou AS. (2017). Continuing education on Paleontology: the experience with the project “Workshop on Paleontology: fossils inside the classroom”. Revista de Cultura e Extensão USP, 17, 11–19. [PDF]


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  • Brazil