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WHAT'S PIATNITZKYSAURUS?



T. Williams wrote..

> I've also seen _Betasuchus_ and _Erectopus_ listed as 
> abelisaurs (without supporting diagnoses), and Phil Currie 
> interprets _Piatnitzkysaurus_ as a basal abelisaur (again, I haven't 
> seen anything published).

I've seen the femur of _Betasuchus_ in the NHM collections (a cast I 
think), and an accompanying note records that, yup, it has recently 
been assigned to Abelisauridae. By one of the European workers I 
think. If this is true, it must have been a small one. 

Who says _Erectopus_ is a possible abelisaur? That's a new one on me. 
AFAIK the _E. superbus_ material is lost - nobody seems to know where 
it is. Yes?

Phil Currie's idea about _Piatnitzkysaurus_ being an abelisaurid is 
in print, in Currie and Zhao (1994) - the big _Sinraptor dongi_ 
paper. They say that _Piatnitzkysaurus'_ braincase, ischial and 
femoral features are more primitive than those of carnosaurs. 
 Harris (1998) finds that _Piatnitzkysaurus_ is the 
sister-taxon to the Allosauroidea (Sinraptoridae + (_Allosaurus_ + 
Carcharodontosauridae)) which, so far as I can tell from the 
material, is the most likely position for this taxon.

"Is this some kind of _joke_?"

DARREN NAISH
darren.naish@port.ac.uk