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LIVING DINOS, LEAPING LEPTICTIDIUM



To save time and space will combine a few responses here.

On speculations about post-KT nonavian dinosaurs, Jaime wrote..

> For excellent speculation, Dougal Dixon is a must,
> as Darren Naish could tell you, 

Well, I certainly regard Dougal's speculations as *interesting* but I 
wouln't call them excellent. For lots and lots of discussion on _The 
New Dinosaurs_ search the archives: use the words Dougal Dixon and 
perhaps the book title too. Many of Dougal's animals were improbable, 
unrealistic or modelled too closely on living or recently extinct 
animals (such that there were panda dinosaurs, koala dinosaurs, 
glyptodont dinosaurs, snake dinosaurs [ugh] etc etc etc): this was 
covered in depth in Greg Paul's review of the book (also discussed in 
the archives). So, to sum up: archives archives archives, use the 
archives. They are at: http://www.cmnh.org/fun/dinosaur-
archive/index.html

And what is this Greg Bear stuff? Is this a book?

On _Leptictidium_, Tom wrote...

> However, when that paper was being reviewed, Hans Sues (then       
> editor at JVP) indicated that a paper was in the works that                 
> demonstrated that _Lepticidium_ was indeed a saltatory (a hopper), 
> rather than a strider.  I honestly never checked to see if that paper
> came out, so if anyone has details, I'd be happy to hear them!

Yes the paper is out - I cited it on the vrtpaleo list not long ago I seem 
to remember. Dino Frey is the first author. Don't have the ref with me 
now - will send it next week. One of Storch's primary reasons for 
interpreting _Leptictidium_ [:)] as a strider rather than a hopper was 
that it has an unfused tib-fib: all saltatorial placentals have fused tib-
fibs. However, kangaroos do not have a fused tib-fib so this is hardly 
concinving. Frey et al. found that the best analogue for _Leptictidium_ 
was _Pedetes_.

"If the Patterson film is a hoax, it is an extremely elaborate one; and 
what is most surprising, given the immense amount of study devoted 
to it, is that it has not been definitively exposed" 
        - - Ciochon et al., 1990.

DARREN NAISH 
PALAEOBIOLOGY RESEARCH GROUP
School of Earth, Environmental & Physical Sciences
UNIVERSITY OF PORTSMOUTH
Burnaby Building
Burnaby Road                           email: darren.naish@port.ac.uk
Portsmouth UK                          tel: 01703 446718
P01 3QL