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Re: Coelophysis

>From: Stang1996@aol.com
 > Coelophysis
 >     Does any one know what the deal is with Coelophysis and Rioaribasaurus
 > is?
 >  Have they decided which name gets priority over the Ghost Ranch skelitons?

This is not strictly a matter of priority.  In fact, if the
Ghost Ranch animals are considered to be in the same genus as the
type speciment of Coelophysis, then the name Coelophysis takes
priority, period.

The issue is one of identification.  It has been suggested that the
type specimen of Coelophysis is so damaged that it is unidentifiable.
On this basis, it was concluded that the Ghost Ranch specimens could
not be assigned to that genus (that, in fact, nothing except the
type specimen could be considered Coelophysis).

Assuming this was so, then the Ghost Ranch specimens were left without
a name, so a new name was proposed for them: Rioarribasaurus.  Thus
the real issue is whether Coelophysis is identifiable or is a nomen
dubium (unidentifiable).

Personally, I am less prone to declare a type specimen a nomen dubium
than some people, so I tend to favor continued assignment of the
Ghost Ranch material to Coelophysis.

swf@elsegundoca.attgis.com              sarima@netcom.com

The peace of God be with you.