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Re: Psittacosaurid Revelations -- second try

At the risk of annoying everyone, I am reposting my e-mail, and trying to separate lines which got run together when I sent it in (some kind of formatting glitch), so you can try to ascertain who is saying what.  ~>:^(
Mickey Mortimer wrote:
Gunter Van Acker wrote- > 3. some basal sauropodomorphs ("prosauropods") were probably omnivorous.
Mickey:  As shown by a lizard skeleton in the stomach of a Nova Scotia specimen, yes, they were.
Ralph :
Really?  Could you tell me where I can find out more about this?  (I never did trust prosauropods; they remind me of dragons)!


Gunter: > Let's assume that these integumentary structures were at least keratinous, what could have been their > function ?
Mickey:  Well, as every reptile has keratinous integumentary structures, that's a pretty safe assumption :-) .

Ralph:  What?  What about question Ruben et al.'s attribution of _Sinosauropteryx_ filaments to collagen fibers supporting the tail of a swimmer?  Couldn't this be the same thing?  (Just kidding.  The _Psittacosaurus_ tail fibers -- if such there be -- are illustrated in _Extreme Dinosaurs_ as being quite long, and I know that the non-fuzzy aquatic _Sinosauropteryx_ hypothesis has been soundly falsified.  Pardon the cheap shot).

Mickey:   As the information is embargoed...

Ralph:  That's right.

Gunter:  > If I recall correctly, another new non-theropod Yixian specimen (?a basal ornithopod) with> integumentary structures was reported a while ago on the DML.

Ralph:  Drat!  Another pesky undocumented critter trying to sneak in?  Have you no papers?  Out, out, I say!

Mickey:  Jeholosaurus has no integumentary structures reported- not scales, not filaments, not feathers.  Psittacosaurus has been reported to have tubercular scales along its arm(http://www.cmnh.org/fun/dinosaur-archive/2001May/msg01018.html).

Ralph:  My post, based on photos in _Dinopress_ magazine.  Tubercles on the arm, yes.  Of course, this doesn't tell us anything about the tail.  On the other hand, it doesn't look good for this being a secondarily flightless psittacosaur (in spite of the name, "parrot lizard").

Ralph's take home message:  Until there is an official description out, it's just a rumor, and Luis is either a seer, somebody with an inside scoop, or just a wacky artist making stuff up!  (And for the record, no, I am not in favor of the wacky artist hypothesis, which would contradict list policy, anyway, so if anyone out there sees it that way, please keep it off list).

I guess we'll all have to buy Luis Rey's _Extreme Dinosaurs_ and hold these thoughts for now.  Enough of this idle speculation.  (Then again, if non-avian dinosaurs hadn't died out, what would they be like today)?

    --Ralph W. Miller III   ralph.miller@alumni.usc.edu

I told y'all you would see something in _Extreme Dinosaurs_ you hadn't seen before!     =( 8^O)