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Re: Were They Really Confuciusornis sanctus???

On Wed, 29 Jul 1998, RAY D STANFORD wrote:

>     Thanks, George,
>     I wouldn't be surprised that there are several species of
> Confuciusornis, and I hope someone out there can tell us about any published
> new species.
>        If C. sanctus doesn't naturally in-fill the pneumatic foramen (in the
> proximal humerous) with age, then those two birds at the NGS exhibition
> should NOT have been referred to C. sanctus -- Right?  (Or, am I wrong?) --
> or, unless the absence or presence of  that particular pneumatic foramen
> happens to be an expression of sexual dimorphism in that species (pure
> speculation on my part).
>     In the seemingly remote possibility that sexual dimorphism might account
> for the paradox, one might then wonder how the presence or absence of that
> feature in opposite sexes might be beneficial.  Would anyone care to proffer
> thoughtful speculation on this possibility -- however remote?

In a brand new paper by Fedducia, that compares C. sanctus with A.
lithographica he states clearly that C sanctus. DOES NOT have a pneumatic
foramen on its humerus, merely a depression that had been turned into a
hole by poor preparation of some the earlier specimens. This may clear up
some of the confusion. I can't remember the ref off hand (in some german
journal with a title I can't recall) but I will visit the library today
and post that ref.


Adam Yates