[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index][Subject Index][Author Index]
Papers that rock: J. Hutchinson in ZJLS
I haven't been posting as much as I used to, but I thought I ought to get
the following information out there.
The following are a pair of papers by John Hutchison that are out in the
latest issue of Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society (131(2)). I've
posted links to the abstracts for these; however, I'm not certain how
accessible these abstracts are. Incidentally, both of these are part of
Hutchinson's Ph.D. dissertation.
The first is Hutchinson, J.R. 2001. The evolution of pelvic osteology and
soft tissues on the line to extant birds (Neornithes). ZJLS 131: 123-168.
The second is Hutchinson, J.R. 2001. The evolution of femoral osteology and
soft tissues on the line to extant birds (Neornithes). ZJLS 131: 169-197.
These are lengthy, data-filled papers so I can't give a comprehensive
review. Below are some comments:
Shortest review: These papers rock.
Short review: If you work on osteology and/or systematics of archosauriforms
between the origin of the clade and the diversification of Neornithes, or
work on biomechanics of the hindlimb, or work on evolution in the origin of
groups in this part of the tree, you are obligated to read these! Hutchison
has managed to tie together many different threads, while at the same time
opening up new lines of research.
The main contribution is his work on assessing homologous characters and the
various states expressed of these characters in terms of bone structures,
bone surfaces (very important aspect here!), and inferred soft-tissue
structures of the pelvis and femur. A very nice aspect is his recognition
that many features previously coded as separate indepedant characters are in
fact different states of the same character. Furthermore, he demonstrates
the non-independance of some seemingly disparate characters. (One nice
result of this: reduction in the number of descriptors necessary to run a
These papers set up a more unified set of labels for various pelvic and
femoral landmarks (fenestrae, trochanters, and such). Some nice surprises
for me: recognition of the ancestral condition of the pubic apron (the whole
region is the ancestral pubic symphsis, stretched out!); a nice discourse on
the evolution of the pelvic fenestra (the opening you don't normally see in
tetanurine pelves, since they are almost always shown in lateral rather than
ventral view); IDing the homologies of the various trochanters & other
crests in the femur.
Like Larry Witmer's work on archosaur facial pneumaticity, this goes a long
way towards increasing both our descriptive ability of the features of the
anatomy and our ability to reconstruct the evolution of these features.
Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
Department of Geology Director, Earth, Life & Time Program
University of Maryland College Park Scholars
College Park, MD 20742
Phone: 301-405-4084 Email: email@example.com
Fax (Geol): 301-314-9661 Fax (CPS-ELT): 301-405-0796