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Re: Ceratopsian Systematics [was: Avaceratops and Ceratops (was Re: THE NEW I...
At 12:37 PM 1/26/00 -0500, Dinogeorge wrote:
>In which case, if Ceratops is to be regarded as a nomen dubium, then the
>names Ceratopidae and Ceratopinae become nomina dubia as well, and must be
According to ICZN code: yes
According to PT: no
Actually, according to PT, "Ceratopidae" and "Ceratopinae" have
never been defined. However, Ceratopsidae and Ceratopsinae remain valid. If
Ceratopsinae had been defined using _Ceratops_, then there would truly be a
problem. It is not too difficult to apply a taxon definition based on
incomplete or otherwise unhappy taxa, it is darned hard if you have no idea
at all where it belongs relative to other anchor taxa. Hence, defining a
taxon using _Hadrosaurus_ is ok, because consensus would put it around
_Kritosaurus_, close enough for disco, anyway. However, using
_Arstanosaurus_ would be unwise in the extreme.
ASIDE: Actually, I should be more clear: Lehman suggests that
_Ceratops_ is indeterminate at the SUBfamily level. I am not sure what he
thinks about i at the family level. Still, being a nomen dubium does
disqualify the family name according to George's reading of the ICZN code
FYI: I believe the reason he said so was the implication that long
brow horns might be ancestral for ceratopsids.
>As I recall, the next available family level taxa created within
>this group are Lambe's Chasmosaurinae and Centrosaurinae, and since they were
>created in the same work, we have a choice about which one we can use for the
Would not page priority apply?
>There are questions about the validity of the name Centrosaurus
>(it's preoccupied, or may require a petition to retain as a valid name), so
My understanding was that it is not pre-occupied, but that there is
a potential homonym: _Kentrosaurus_. Is this what you are referring to?
>it's better to use the unquestionably valid Chasmosaurus as the type genus of
Agreed, Linneanly speaking.
>My own preference
>for the name of that second subfamily is Pachyrhinosaurinae, which is the
>next available name and doesn't have potential nomenclatural problems.
And it has a certain flare, don't you think?
And, just to rant for a brief second: am I the only one who thinks
CerTOPidae sounds really really dumb? I mean, I know it is considered
technically correct, but traditionally -ops taxa have been formed retaining
the "s" (well, at least among ceratopsians and gorgonopsians). Personally, I
care a bit more for the tradition, but there I go, not being a stickler...
git a rope!
Jonathan R. Wagner, Dept. of Geosciences, TTU, Lubbock, TX 79409-1053
"Why do I sense we've picked up another pathetic lifeform?" - Obi-Wan Kenobi