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Re: Will the real Tanystropheus please stand up?!



>I've heard recent talk here about that long-necked fish-eater
>Tanystropheus, and I wondered if anyone could tell me that
>creature's true identity.  I have in the past seen it classified
>as a true lizard, an eosuchian, a primitive Euryapsid, and most
>recently as an "archosauromorph", a group of "uncles" to the
>archosaus that seems to consist solely of Tanystropheus and the
>rhyncosaurs (which I had always heard before were related to the
>Tuatara).  Can someone fill me in about this "archosauromorph"
>group and where Tanystropheus fits in to it all?

Archosauromorpha is the group which contains the Archosauria, not the
"uncles" to the archosaurs!

Archosauromorpha = all reptiles sharing a more recent common ancestor with
birds & crocs than with lizards & tuataras.

Archosauria = the most recent common ancestor of birds & crocs & all of
that ancestors descendants.

(And, you did not mention above that Coelophysis spent a few years as a
species of Tanystropheus!).

                                
                 Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.                  Phone: 703-648-5280      
                 Vertebrate Paleontologist         Fax:    703-648-5420
tholtz@geochange.er.usgs.gov ------------>       th81@umail.umd.edu
U.S. Geological Survey          ------------->       University of Maryland
Branch of Paleontology & Stratigraphy ---->       Department of Geology
MS 970 National Center
Reston, VA  22092               ------------->        College Park, MD  20742
                                                          U.S.A.