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Re: Theropod embryo hands
> I don't know about the troodontids, but I've heard that the single
> Mongolian oviraptor embryo that had a hand preserved, had it preserved
> _inside_ the shell, underneath the rest of the embryo. They would have
> to dig through from the other side to reach it, and apparently they
> don't want to do that. So, the oviraptor embryo is effectively useless
> for answering this question.
If the embryo is developed enough to be a decently preserved fossil,
it is almost certainly already tridactyl, and so useless for resolving the
issue even if they DID prepare the other side. The key stages we would
want to look at for comparison are relatively early in digit development
and so very unlikely to ever turn up in an adequately preserved embryo
unless the bone gods are feeling EXTREMELY generous.