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Re: Archaeopteryx and Flight

Stan wrote:

<<Also, considering that some rather specialized water birds are
known from the Late Cretaceous, it is fairly clear that some
rather specialized birds of ohter sorts had to already exist.
[This can be confirmed by cladistic analysis of the relationships
of the water birds to other living groups, showing that forms
similar to certain living groups had to exist *prior* to the
evolution of certain aquatic groups].>>

I didn't realise that cladistics could confirm anything.  I thought it was 
based on parsimony and represents only the best-fit representation of 
relationships.  Did the water birds in the late Cretaceous compete for the 
same food as the pterosaurs or were they specialised to feed on something 
the pterosaurs didn't.

Neil Clark
Curator of Palaeontology
Hunterian Museum
University of Glasgow
email: NCLARK@museum.gla.ac.uk

Mountains are found in erogenous zones.
(Geological Howlers - ed. WDI Rolfe)