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Re: Fixing dinosaurian carnivour question



In a message dated 5/27/99 7:48:38 AM EST, th81@umail.umd.edu writes:

<< There is a big difference in calling _Megalosaurus_ or _Iguanodon_ "extinct
 avians" (something very few would do) and in calling them "non-avian
 dinosaurs" (something a lot more common). >>

Well, the fact that they're extinct is irrelevant to their classification, 
but the notion that they're "non-avian" has everything to do with their 
classification. So this is like comparing apples with Audi automobiles. 
Classified this way, with Aves containing Dinosauria, one might call 
_Megalosaurus_ a "carnosaurian avian," and _Iguanodon_  an "ornithischian 
avian"; and both would be "dinosaurian avians" (along with modern birds, 
_Triceratops_, and so forth).

Incidentally, "non-dinosaurian avians" in this scheme are the archosaurs 
along the stem joining Dinosauria to the common ancestor of crocs and birds 
(most of which, by the way, were pre-feathered arboreal climbers...).