[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index][Subject Index][Author Index]
Re: What is a dinosaur?
>What is a dinosaur? Ask anyone, and he/she will describe it (provide
>a sort of diagnosis).<snip>Of course, in dinosaur paleontology we
>need exactly the kind of definition Dinogeorge supplied.
I think that the 'saurian' definition comes closest to a general
word that would include all prehistoric air-breathing animals who's
lines became extinct at or prior to the KT. As far as I can tell,
there is no general-usage name for this particular group of animals
and it is THIS that leads most to the mis-use of 'dinosaur' to cover
all such groups....
The term "prehistoric mammals" in general usage seems to easily
cover the mammals that lived just after, bringing in the 'Age of
Mammals", (and somehow easily ignoring the mammals that were extant
BEFORE the KT), and "Ice Age Mammals" is really esy for most to
picture, but 'prehistoric reptiles' does NOT cover the group mentioned
earlier from before the KT.
What does? Does 'saurian' work well enough for a general usage of
this? Can we decide to MAKE 'saurian' the correct word for this?
Furthermore, what do we do for a general usage word for animals
alive BEFORE the 'Age of Dinosaurs' that are not included in the
definition, 'saurian', such as Synapsids? "Primitive land animals"
seems much too vague and general to lead people to a clear
understanding of the topic.