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At 19:05 1/08/96 -0400, Nick Longrich wrote:

>       So we're told that because of lacking the alula birds were both 
>restricted to and prevented from taking off from trees. Sounds pretty 
>dubious either way, and the alula may be important, but it seems a little 
>exaggerated in its importance here. Bats get by fine without them, 
>insects don't have them, pterosaurs could possibly have approached modern 
>bird diversity and they don't have them. 
>       Pterosaurs were very diverse, and they didn't have an alula. 
>       Certainly, the alula must have played an important role in the 
>evolution of bird flight, and probably opened up a lot of new 
>possibilities, perhaps letting birds do things that bats can't and 
>pterosaurs couldn't, but it sounds like people are jumping to cite this 
>as evidence for their own views of where birds came from.
>       So maybe people aren't ignoring Greg Paul, just 
>good sense and good science ;).

   First, I want to introduce myself. My name is Bernardino P. Perez-Moreno,
and I am one of the authors of the paper on the new Early Cretaceous bird
from Spain.

   Second I want to make some comments about the message you sent to the
list some days ago. The authors of this paper are never ignoring "good sense
and good science". You should read the paper before you ever think this kind
of thinks. The paragraphs on which your message was based on were written by
the science editor of a newspaper, not by the authors of the paper. In the
paper, we never said anything about ground, trees nor cliffs. We just said
that _Archaeopteryx_ probably had some kind of constraints for taking off
and landing because it has no alula (no matter from where it try to take off
or land). We never try to use _Eoalulavis_ as an evidence for any theory of
the origin of the avian flight, just as an evidence of the early phases of
the evolution of the avian flight.

   I hope the next time you will make the thinks in the right way, and you
read the original paper before you make bad science fiction as this time,
because you don't obtain all the data you have available to make science
(something that other people, like me and my colleages, are trying to do
every day of their lifes).


Bernardino P. Perez-Moreno                   Fax: 34-1-3978344
Unidad de Paleontologia                      E-mail: Nino@ccuam3.sdi.uam.es
Departamento de Biologia                     Phone: 34-1-3978139 
Facultad de Ciencias
Universidad Autonoma de Madrid
28049 - Madrid