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Re: Alvarezsaurids



In a message dated 95-12-03 01:01:10 EST, zooamy@zoo.latrobe.edu.au (Adam
Yates) writes:

>So what is the current consensus on the relationships of this family? Are 
>they closer to modern birds than Archy? Also might their unusually wide 
>distribution for a derived Late Cretaceous family be indicative of being 
>secondarily flightless, ie. ancestral alvarezsaurids dispersed by flying. 
>In this light I think it is possible that the very bird-like Kakuru 
>kunjani from Australia might be one as well.
>
>

See Luis Chiappe's article on Mesozoic bird evolution in the Nov 23 issue of
_Nature_ for the status of Alvarezsauridae within Aves.

_Kakuru_ is known from very fragmentary material, most if not all of which is
presently unavailable for study. It's distinctive, but it maysimply be too
big for inclusion in Alvarezsauridae. Certainly worth another look in the
light of the more recent discoveries.