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Re: Feathered Dinosaur

I find Chris Evans' letter below to be most perplexing:
ceevans@home.com wrote:

> Hi Everyone,
> I was wondering if anyone had heard about the new discovery that should
> finally put to rest the argument against birds evolving from dinosaurs.
> If you haven't, then I'll be the first to tell you. I don't know a whole
> lot yet, but this is what I know: the second half of NPR's talk of the
> nation Science Friday radio show (2:30 P.M.) described in detail a new
> find which may prove many scientists (for one Bob Bakker) correct in
> their theory that birds were directly descended from dinosaurs. So here
> it is: it is a theropod of about medium size (10-15 feet) which was
> found with preserved feathers. If anyone knows any more, please tell me.
> Chris

This sounds like an exaggerated _Beipiaosaurus inexpectus_ (actual length =
7 feet = 2 meters +).  In fact, the June 30, 2000 show which I had assumed
Chris referenced includes "Dino-Bird Debate," in which Lawrence Martin
explains why _Longisquama_ blows the "birds are modified maniraptorans"
hypothesis out of the water (if you buy his interpretation of things).  An
unusual "debate," considering that the only disagreement Martin received was
by a caller who objected to carbon dating (sic) the fossil.  Sadly, Dr.
Bakker did not call in to present an opposing viewpoint on this show.

To relive these moments in garbled "Real Audio," locate Science Friday at
<www.npr.org/programs/scifri>, then click on "latest show" (or search for
the date and title after next week).  The show takes up the second half of
the first hour, and transcripts are available for a fee.  The show states
that an image of _Longisquama_ was available on the Science Friday web site,
but I couldn't find it.

-- Ralph W. Miller III       gbabcock@best.com

"Scale back expectations."