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Re: Atlantosaurus/Apatosaurus/Brontosaurus

From: Scott <HORTON@bcrssu.agr.ca>
 >   This is not for the FAQ, being perhaps a little too involved. But the 
 > redis-
 > cussion of "Brontosaurus" stirred another thought that I would like to have
 > settled. If a new find (a more complete specimen) that matches the 2.5 sacral
 > centra shows that this animal should be included in the same genus as Apato-
 > saurus, does this mean that "Brontosaurus" is going to have to be renamed 
 > to Atlantosaurus? Does this ever end?

Very close.  It would also take a demonstration that such fragmentary
centra are diagnostic, that is sufficiently distinctive to identify
a sauropod to the generic level.  (At present it is though that
diplodocid centra are so similar, except for size, that such a small
bit can never be truly identified).

However, given the current state of things, if such an event came
to pass, it is almost certain that the Commission would be petitioned
to conserve the name Apatosaurus over the (effectively) forgotten
name Atlantosaurus.  [Their job is to promote stability, and
where following the rules would destabilize things, they are
authorized to set the rules aside - but *only* the Commission
is so authorized].

swf@elsegundoca.ncr.com         sarima@netcom.com

The peace of God be with you.