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Protoavis (was Re: solnhofen)
certain postcranial features which suggest that _Megalancosaurus_ might have
been a gliding animal (all challenged by Renesto, who restores
_Megalancosaurus_ as a tree-climbing, non-gliding chameleon-like animal).
I do not deny that some small drepanosaurids might have been gliders, but
I did not consider any postcranial feature representing a good evidence
for gliding as for, say, Icarosaurus. However, who knows? How different is
the skeleton of a gliding ringtail marsupial from that one of a
I preferred to be conservative. So far...
>>none of these animals has yet been found anywhere else in the Dockum.
>Again, maybe they have been and no one has realized it yet (or at least
>published on it...)
In my 2000 paper I quoted as " personal communication" (with written
permission of the person quoted, so I can report it here) that a true
drepanosaurid shoulder girdle from the Dockum is indeed under study ...
If not, I know that
>drepanosaurids have been described from roughly contemporary horizons
>elsewhere in North America.
Berman and Reisz 1992 Journal of Palaeontology 66(6) pp. 1001-1009
In that paper they described _Dolabrosaurus aquatilis_ an incomplete
specimen that is undoubtedly a drepanosaurid from the Chinle Formation. And
very probably a climber, despite its name.
Colbert and Olsen have in press (Am. Mus. Novitates) the long awaited
description of the Deep Tailed Swimmer from the Triassic of Newark and they
consider it a drepanosaurid. Mmmm ... another drepanosaurid in water? :-/
All the best,
"Before being enlightened, hard work; after enlightenment, hard work"
Dr. Silvio Renesto
Dipartimento di Scienze della Terra
Università degli Studi di Milano
via Mangiagalli 34
I 20133 Milano