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I finally got a chance to see Virginia Morell's Audubon article (March-April
1997 issue) on the new Chinese feathered theropod. (It is referred to as
_Compsognathus prima_ in the article: should that be changed to _C. primus_?).
Unfortunately, the close-ups on the integument are not as detailed as I'd
like (Let's get some nice, black & white low angle lighting micrographs on
it, shall we?). The teeth are serrated (which leads to a new Feduccia-ism:
"And there's no way you can derive a pegged tooth from one that's shaped
like a steak knife." Right. And all theropods have huge pubic boots,
Also unfortunate is the fact that it's skull is pretty much squashed and
smeared: it will take sometime to reconstruct which bones are what. Ah,
well, you can't have everything. This critter's got a short little
scapula-coracoid and forelimb and a fairly small pelvis. Whatever it was,
it was not particularly close to birds.
Excellent photos of some of the new oviraptorids and Velociraptor specimens
from the AMNH-Mongolian expeditions are also featured.
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
"To trace that life in its manifold changes through past ages to the present
is a ... difficult task, but one from which modern science does not shrink.
In this wide field, every earnest effort will meet with some degree of
success; every year will add new and important facts; and every generation
will bring to light some law, in accordance with which ancient life has been
changed into life as we see it around us to-day."
--O.C. Marsh, Vice Presidential Address, AAAS, August 30, 1877