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Re: Feduccia ORIGIN

swf@ElSegundoCA.NCR.COM wrote:

>He [Feduccia] seems to be ignoring the possibility of a long-forelimbed,
>arboreal *dinosaur*.

>Long-forelimbed we have, and in forms apparently close to the ancestry of
>birds.  We call them deinonychids.  Other, slightly more distant, examples
>include troodontids and ornithomimids. 

All of these groups are Cretaceous. I think that Feduccia is concerned with
finding a suitable dinosaur ancestor predating (or at least of roughly the
same age) as the earliest known birds (and he seems to lean toward the
possibility that this may be _Protoavis_, and since the Jurassic birds are so
advanced, that means he's calling for an ancestor in the Carnian or earlier).
He judges neither _Eoraptor_ or _Herrerasaurus_ viable candidates
(short-limbed, cursorials).

I'm going to go back over Feduccia's discussion of the morphologic problems
he perceives with a theropod ancestry for birds this weekend, and maybe I'll
wade into this a little more deeply.

All in all, this very sort of controversey makes me glad I do mosasaurs... 

Caitlin R. Kiernan