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>From: "King, Norm" [email@example.com]
> According to Holtz (J. Paleo., v.68, no. 5, p. 1107), an unambiguous
>synapomorphy of maniraptors (sensu Gautier only?) is a long and slender
>metacarpal III, yet tyrannosaurs have a very short metacarpal III.
> The metacarpal III of Daspletosaurus was much shorter (and much, much
>smaller) than metacarpal II: see the photo in D. A. Russell 1970(by the
>way--if you ever get to see that specimen, tell me [classroom exercise]
>what's wrong with the [incomplete] manus as depicted).
> Question: what are the digits in a tyrannosaur manus? Are they I and II
>or II and III?
The digits present are I and II, but a highly degenerate, fingerless
metacarpal III is present in at least some tyrant dino hands.
(A minority view is that the digits present are II and III, and that other
tetanurines have digits II, III, and IV is voiced by some. I mention this
view for fairness' sake.)
Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
Vertebrate Paleontologist Webpage: http://www.geol.umd.edu
Dept. of Geology Email:firstname.lastname@example.org
University of Maryland Phone:301-405-4084
College Park, MD 20742 Fax: 301-314-9661