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Re: state dinosaur - the last word

At 09:02 AM 1/30/97 -0600, you wrote:
>>In Maryland, there has been a move to make "Astrodon" the
>>"State Dinosaur"...
>Too late:  they already have one, the Baltimore oriole.

[I hate when this happens...  I really hate when threads cross newsgroups.
Ah, to boldy go where we've been going for a week already... :-(]

Okay, a bit of explanation here:

This thread came off of sci.bio.paleontology, where there was an ongoing
thread about State Fossils.  Mike Keesey mentioned that he thought
Maryland's State Fossil was Astrodon johnstoni.

I pointed out that a) our State Fossil is (sadly) Ecphora gardnerae
gardnerae (formerly E. quadricostata, but nevertheless, still only a Miocene
gastropod).  I mentioned that there was a move to make Astrodon "the first
State Dinosaur", but noted that:

A) This move never passed the State Legislature

B) That many of the other official State Fossils are dinosaurs, so even if
this had been passed in the early 1990s (i.e., before Triceratops became the
first official "State Dinosaur" in the U.S.) it still wouldn't be THAT special.


C) That every state in the Union has had a State Dinosaur for decades
(Maryland's is indeed the Baltimore oriole, Virginia's the bluejay, etc.).
(Do you REALLY think that as a cladist and an ostromid that I would have
failed to have mentioned this in the MD Governor's Committee on Promoting
Paleontology back in the early 1990s? :-)

So, not much more to say on that subject.  However, someone may want to post
the fully updated State Fossil list (which was posted to s.b.paleo a day or
two ago), if there is interest.

Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
Vertebrate Paleontologist     Webpage: http://www.geol.umd.edu
Dept. of Geology              Email:th81@umail.umd.edu
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