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RE: Important feathered dinosaurs
Tom Holtz wrote:
>I'd actually say that _Sinosauropteryx_ is by far the most important of all
>of these. _Sinornithosaurus_ and _Beipiaosaurus_ are significant (in
>documenting feathers in forms which are clearly members of previously known
>taxa); _Caudipteryx_ is significant in the particularly well-developed
>nature of the feathers; and _Protarchaeopteryx_ as not-to significant, in
>being a rather crappy specimen of no well-constrained systematic status.
>_Sinosauropteryx_, however, documents the presence of these elements in a
>VERY primitive coelurosaur, thus moving the origin of said structures much
>lower on the family tree of the theropods.
I agree with the scientific rationale. From the standpoint of calling
attention to the Liaoning deposits, _Sinosauropteryx_ has to take
historical precedence because it was the first "feathered dinosaur."
Jeff Hecht Boston Correspondent New Scientist magazine
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