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Re: Doesn't George have a point?
Obviously any such temporal problem in the fossil records raises some
doubt, but in this case I wouldn't call them serious doubts.
Choristoderes were only known from Cretaceous to Eocene until the late
1980's, when Evans found one in the mid Jurassic, and possibly pushed back
to Trassic by a form described about 1996 (I forget the name).
And if Lazarussuchus of the Oligocene is sister group to the rest of
the choristoderes, then that raises a huge temporal problem, but not too
terribly serious, considering the rarity of these fossils.
Cheers, Ken Kinman
P.S. I do find George's BCF hypothesis very interesting, however, and I
think that it is a possibility that should be carefully considered. I
From: Larry Dunn <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Doesn't George have a point?
Date: Thu, 29 Jun 2000 14:56:37 -0700 (PDT)
Not that I believe that dinosaurs evolved from birds
per se (?A planet where apes evolved from men?!?!??),
but doesn?t George have a point when he says that the
lack of a suitable known dinosaur ancestor of birds in
the appropriate time period raises some really serious
doubts as to the dinosaur ancestry of dinosaurs?
I guess this is actually a question about the
scientific method as it relates to paleontology.
Doesn?t the formation of this hypothesis require that
the temporal bit fall into place as well? As I
understand the facts, there currently isn?t any
specimen of a suitable coelurosaur predating the
earliest fossil birds. Doesn?t that have any bearing
on the formation of a hypothesis? (Or is this wrong?)
Can scientists say, ?other things look very good for
our hypothesis, but we?ll need to keep looking for an
appropriately early ancestor,? and still have a valid
And what is the status of the idea until the suitable
piece of information comes along?
This is not a rhetorical question, or a statement of a
position. It is a quest ... for the truth (dramatic
"I've been ionized, but I'm OK now."
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