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At 02:45 AM 1/13/96 -0500, Nicholas R. Longrich wrote:
>But then, if dinosaurs are reptiles, what are
>birds? Birds are dinosaurs, so does the commutative property (A=B, B=C, so
>A=C) apply here and make them reptiles?
Under cladistics, absolutely.
>I suppose we could argue they're
>sufficiently different from dinosaurs to qualify for their own class, but
>we still consider bats mammals, too, and dinosaurs have some significant
>differences of their own.
In regards to Linnean classification, which the above paragraph refers,
I've never gotten a really clear answer as to whether birds should be nested
in one of the groupings under Dinosauria, or belong in a completely new class.
George O. clearly gives birds a new class. Bob Bakker (who is by no
means the only one, I just can't remember all the authors, I've read so many
books) certainly would put them inside the Dinosauria as a sub-order or
Based on my own weak understanding of how you decide whether something
belongs in a "new" class in Linnean classification, birds are *not*
sufficiently different to warrant being placed outside the Dinosauria. If
birds are part of the Dinosauria under Linnean classification, and Dinosaurs
are reptiles under Linnean classification, then, as under cladistics, birds
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