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On Wed, 28 Feb 1996, Tim Williams wrote:
> I read somewhere that _Sharovipteryx_ is a member of the
> Prolacertiformes i.e. a diapsid and close relative of the prolacertids
> and tanystropheids. I can't remember the author or the source
> (sorry!). I guess the pterosaur theory is passe... (at least
> according to this study).
I don't know the hard
anatomical details, but one thing it doesn't look like is a pterosaur.
You can follow the rear flight membrane all the way out to one of the toes,
but I couldn't see anything on the forelimbs. I'd guess its a rather
improbable pterosaurian ancestor just on that basis, that the hindlimbs
rather than forelimbs are developed for gliding. But it is an incredibly
cute little creature.
On the subject of "Mysterious Origins": it was, fortunately, not
the most convincing piece of creationism I've seen. It was about on the
level of "Weekly World News". Depending on whether one has a pessimistic
or optimistic view of America's level of intelligence and education,
you will view it as either one of the worst things to happen to
paleontology, or one of the worst things to happen to Creationism, in
quite a while. Of course, I didn't see the web site until AFTER my
impassioned and indignant email to NBC. On the other hand, it may be that
if you're not for informing and educating the public, you must be against
it. The best thing to do is just flip a coin to decide whether to laugh