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Re: labels are imaginary
On Sun, 4 Feb 1996, Jeffrey Martz wrote:
> The point I'm making is just that we assign labels only for
> our understanding. So why say "avian dinosaur" and "non-avian
> dinosaur" when you could just say "bird" and "dinosaur"?
> Cladistics has created a convoluted naming system that
> does not clarify things any better than the traditional
> system. Whats the point?
If you can prove to me that ALL non-avian dinosaurs are functionally and
anatomically more similar to each other then any of them is to a bird,
I'll go along with you.
The point is, I don't see the *usefulness* of separating birds from the
rest of the dinosaurs (aside from dumb stuff like being able to say
"dinosaurs are extinct"). I don't know if "dinosaur" is the best name
for the descendants of the last common ancestor of _Iguanodon_ and
_Gallus_, but apparently it's what were stuck with.
Crossopterygii and Osteichthyes are another matter. Throw 'em out!
> LN Jeff
Pacific Lutheran University
Tacoma, WA 98447
"The gene pool could use a little chlorine."