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Re: Rapetosaurus stuff
In a message dated 8/1/01 5:58:57 PM EST, Mickey_Mortimer11@msn.com writes:
<< Damn the current trend to trash old species just to name a new one. They
should designate one of the "Titanosaurus" madagascariensis caudals the
lectotype and name one of the new genera "genus A" madagascariensis. "T."
madagascariensis is obviously not nomen dubium if its remains can be referred
to two other species. It's simply a chimaera and must be split. >>
Absolutely correct. The idea is to >bend over backwards< to try to preserve
the original name, not to discard it out of hand. In the case of the
Madagascar titanosaurs, it seems we must declare the non-Rapetosaurus-like
caudal the lectotype of T. madagascariensis, then remove the species from
Titanosaurus (unless the caudal is reasonably similar to the known caudals of
Titanosaurus, of course), and (perhaps) erect a new genus for T.
madagascariensis if no other titanosaur genus is appropriate.
The fact that Opisthocoelicaudia seems to wind up in the middle of the
titanosaurs despite its incredible array of completely non-titanosaurid
features is making it look more and more as if it is a subjective synonym of
Nemegtosaurus. Rapetosaurus apparently had an Opisthocoelicaudia-like body
and a Nemegtosaurus-like skull. Also, there seem to be several distinct
families of sauropods previously referred to Titanosauridae. And it's hard to
believe that Rapetosaurus had dorsal nostrils >and< pencil-like teeth located
only anteriorly in the jaw, and it's >not< a diplodocid.
Sauropods, what a mess.