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Microvenatoridae?



  Ken Kinman was asking about this being an established taxon.

  It isn't. There are precisely a grand total of _2_ papers on
*Microvenator* that go into _any_ detail on its anatomy, short of just
mentioning it. Ostrom, 1970, writes about 5 pages and devotes two and a
half plates to illustrate it, when he names it. Makovicky and Sues,
1997, reanalyze the systematics of this form and find it is too
incomplete to qualify its strict relationships; it appears to be
related to oviraptorosaurs, but based on the brevity of published or
analyzed postcrania in oviraptorosaurs, this has limited how far it
could be done. Certainly Makovicky's work on vertebral pneumaticity
(when or if it's published) will allow a much greater interpretation of
quality of some of the more important key elements in oviraptorosaur
anatomy, in my opinion. In neither paper, however, nor with either
authorship, is there a tendency to name monotypic families. Marsh and
Cope and Bonaparte have named tons of monotypic families that mean
nothing, because there is no support for them, and many just turn to
dust.

  No argument, I don't think *Microvenator* deserves to become the type
of a family just because "Caudipteridae" was badly coined, even without
justifying why these two should even be a family, form a family, or are
even that close to each other. *Microvenator* and *Caudipteryx* have
never been put into a publish analysis together, and the nature of the
segnosaur/oviraptorosaur/*Caudipteryx* trichotomy has not been tested. 

=====
Jaime A. Headden

  Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhr-gen-ti-na
  Where the Wind Comes Sweeping Down the Pampas!!!!

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