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Re: Classification of dinosaurs
>Now, names ending in "-oidea" are always superfamilies - groups
>of related families not sufficiently distinct to be considred
>as orders or suborders.
Something else to be considered is this - a growing number of systematists
are beginning to realize the artificial nature of the Linnean hierarchy
(genus, family, superfamily, order, class, etc.) and are abandoning it
altogether. We still recognize species as the fundamental units of
evolution, and we still perceive groups as being nested within larger
groups, but it matters little to us if a particular group is a family,
order, or kingdom.
In the new system, a group ending in "-oidea" doesn't imply any particular
rank, other than a higher rank than something ending in "-idae."
Christopher A. Brochu
Department of Geological Sciences
University of Texas at Austin
Austin, TX 78712