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Re: Metatarsal fusion/nonfusion: birds/theropods



At 07:41 PM 3/15/97 -0800, Darren Tanke wrote:
> 4. Are there any extant birds with unfused metartarsals? 
>Embryologically, do birds show development of a fully fused 
>tarsometatarsus from the start, or show some degree of metatarsal 
>separation early on in embryogenesis with full fusion manifesting 
>later on?

Later on.

Indeed the direction of fusion is what distinguishes enantiornithines from
living birds.  (The name means "opposite birds", and it is the direction of
fusion of the metatarsals that is "opposite" in these birds).


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May the peace of God be with you                sarima@ix.netcom.com
                                                      swf@elsegundoca.ncr.com