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Re: The beak of C. dui



  I'm probably reaching my limit on public emails
today, and if not, Mickey can tell me if so. However,
I had not considered fully the sexual dimorphism
possible in *Confuciusornis*, as pointed out privately
by a fellow listmember, so I will therefore attempt to
present my position on _this_ aspect of the thread.

   Now, again, it is possible there _are_ two species
of *Confuciusornis* in the Jehol fauna we are having
such fun reading about (or in Josh Smith's envious
case, being there). But the holotype of *C. dui* is a
long-tailed, hypothetically male specimen, and some
specimens I have seen photographs (well, slides) of
specimens with strait beaks (keratinous, these) also
having long streamer tails, so I am not entirely
convinced that the beak is indicative of a gender, or
even species. Who knows. My original proposal was to
do a more comprehensive analysis of the specimens to
see if there was a natural separation or localization
of certain morphologies, and this would really be the
best evidence for specific variation.

  Shrug.

=====
Jaime "James" A. Headden

"Come the path that leads us to our fortune."

Qilong---is temporarily out of service.
Check back soon.

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