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Re: Reflections on Recent "Dromaeosaurs"



Jaime Headden wrote:

  I have reason to believe that *Utahraptor*, based on
a variety of bones from the same formation that all
yield dromaeosaurid characters pertaining to a
particularly large animal (elongate premaxilla,
T-shaped lachrymal, mediolaterally compressed pedal
and manal claws of very large size relative to
phalanges and limbs, tibia with astragalar facet
having a sub-rectangular outline, caudal vertebrae
with elongate post- and prezygapophyses and the
prezygapophyses longer than one preceeding centrum
[reconstructed?]) suggesting they belong to a single
taxon.

Yep, all these check out. The prezygapophyeal rods and chevron extensions are elongated, although I don't believe their full length is preserved. The subrectangular frontal elements (in dorsal view) might link _Utahraptor_ to _Dromaeosaurus_ (as suggested by Kirkland et al.).


It has not been suggested they all belong to a
single individual.

Too right!


I feel the avian character of the coracoid and the frontals being more "swollen" than in velociraptorines like *Saurornitholestes*

How do you mean "swollen"? To me, the frontals of _Bambiraptor_ look identical to those of _Saurornitholestes_, at least in dorsal view. (Comparing Sues (1978) and Burnham et al. (2000).)



  I'll say my piece on *Adasaurus* in a different
post.

Ah! This I'll look forward to.

Cheers

Tim



<< | `--+--*Achillobator giganticus* `--+--*Ozraptor subotaii* |?-*Variraptor mechinorum* `--+--*Dromaeosaurus albertensis* `--+--*Utahraptor ostrommaysi / | ostrommaysorum* `--+--+--*Bambiraptor feinbergi / | | feinbergorum* | |?-*Adasaurus mongoliensis* | `--+--*Unenlagia comahuensis* | |--*Rahonavis ostromi* | `?-+--+--*Archaeopteryx | | | lithographica* | | `--*Archaeopteryx | | bavarica?* | `--Neornithes |?-*Sinornithosaurus millenii* `--+--*Deinonychus antirrhopus* `--+--*Velociraptor mongoliensis* `--*Saurornitholestes langstoni* >>

  Note: Sinorn, Vel, and Bambi are radially
represented, caring for my ambiguity on they're
relationship. I changed "Aves" to "Neornithes", per
Mike Keesey's observation. Some other techincal
problems have been resolved (serial *A. bavarica,* *A.
lithographica,* and *Neornithes,* *Rahonavis,* and
*Unenlagia*) with doubt placed on the placement of
*Adasaurus* and *Variraptor.* Oddly enough, Buffetaut
and leLoeuff (1998) did not provide synapomorphies of
Vari and Dromaeosauridae, but some are apparent as
Mickey Mortimer noted in his character analysis last
month (this list).

=====
Jaime "James" A. Headden

"Come the path that leads us to our fortune."

Qilong---is temporarily out of service.
Check back soon.

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