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Re: Velociraptor keel?



On Mon, 15 Nov 1999, Patrick Norton wrote:

> Is there any evidence that  _Velociraptor mongoliensis_ had a keel? I
> suspect it did not, but if there is evidence to the contrary, I'd appreciate
> a note, or perhaps even a reference. The evidence published so far seems to
> indicate that it did not, although the published info is sparse and I'd
> appreciate any thoughts or observations.
        Published info is actually fairly good by now. The original
description of dromaeosaur sternals is in Russian by Barsbold, if I
recall, so it's often not cited (Barsbold made some important
contributions that usually get overlooked in citing people who helped
establish the bird-dinosaur). More recently Norell and Makovicky had an
AMNH Novitates paper where they describe dromaeosaur anatomy, including a
fairly good pair of sternals. They lack any sort of midline fusion or
keel, as do other known dromaeosaur sternal plates. 
        I believe that there is a single oviraptorid sternum with midline
fusion, but it lacks a keel. 
        -N