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Coelophysis species (was Re: NA therizinosaurs, Otogornis, Aublysodon and more)



In a message dated 11/9/00 1:32:05 AM Eastern Standard Time, 
Mickey_Mortimer@email.msn.com writes:

> Since Syntarsus kayentakatae is more closely related to S. rhodesiensis than
>  either is to Coelophysis bauri (Tykoski 1998), S. kayentakatae would become
>  a species of Coelophysis.

I haven't read Tykoski, but I'd have to say maybe, maybe not.  According to 
the abstract to Downs (2000), "A new comparison of _Coelophysis_ and 
_Syntarsus_ indicates that putative differences in the skull roof, 
interdental plates, palate, pelvic girdle, hind limb and dorsal vertebrae 
have been misinterpreted", and thus the differences between _C. bauri_ and 
_S. rhodesiensis_ are not as great as had been assumed.

If these characterss include some or all of those that supposedly united _S. 
rhodesiensis_ and _S. kayentakatae_ to the exclusion of _C. bauri_, it is 
conceivable that future comparisons could show that _rhodesiensis_ is closer 
to _bauri_ than to _kayentakatae_, in which case there are three options (and 
the choice is largely a matter of taste):

    1.  All three species could be placed in _Coelophysis_;
    2.  _rhodesiensis_ and _bauri_ could be placed in _Coelophysis_ and         
_kayentakatae_ assigned a new generic name; or
    3.  extreme splitters could continue to recognize both _Coelophysis_ and    
    _Syntarsus_ and assign _kayentakatae_ to a new genus.

As I said, however, I have not read Tykoski's paper, so I don't really know 
how plausible this is.

Later,
Nick Pharris