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Re: Avasaurus

At 12:31 AM 2/4/98 -0500, Allan Edels wrote:
>    You are correct, I did mean _Brachyceratops_  (I probably was
>cross-pollenating the name with that large Morroccan sauropod [known only
>from footprints] - _Brevaparapus_ (I know I probably spelled that wrong
>too - sorry - it's late)).

Need to check the spelling myself, but in any case there is NO sauropod
called _Breviparapus_ (or whatever the correct one is).  This is the name of
a trackway, not an animal.  3000 different species of sauropod (if such
existed) could make the same form of track, which would still be given the
same name.  Ichnotaxa (track names) are the names of structures, not of
organisms.  Different species of organism can potentially produce the same
trackway type, and a single species of organism can produce different
trackway types on different sorts of sediments, at different speeds, doing
different things, etc.

Put a different way, if someone were to dig up the bones of the
_Breviparapus_ (sp?) track maker, those bones would not be given this name.
They would be given their own name, one distinct, biological taxonomic name.

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