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Re: Status of _Caudipteryx_

I don't want to get too involved in this discussion because a lot of Jaime's commentary on your statements seems like unnecessary nitpicking. Thus it has wandered so far from the original subject that I'm already having trouble remembering how it started.
However, I did want to comment on nitpicking that I thought was particularly inappropriate and inaccurate (since you didn't comment on it yourself). I was very surprised that Jaime compared "cats" and early Miacids. Cats (Felidae) are not only a separate family from Miacidae, but the latest comprehensive mammalian classification (McKenna and Bell, 1997) doesn't even put Miacidae in the larger grouping called Feliformia.
Miacids are instead placed in Caniformia, and regarded as more closely related to weasels (or even primitive dogs, bears, etc.). So in my opinion his argument extrapolating from Miacids to "cats", just doesn't "fly" (pun intended).
From: ELurio@aol.com
Reply-To: ELurio@aol.com
To: qilongia@yahoo.com, dinosaur@usc.edu
Subject: Re: Status of _Caudipteryx_
Date: Mon, 1 Jan 2001 10:24:38 EST

In a message dated 1/1/01 3:33:59 AM, qilongia@yahoo.com writes:

<< I'd like to see your evidence for the lineality of equoid evolution.
Several different branches developed unidactyly (or at least walking on
all four feet on one toe). Facial morphology, tooth morphology, and
limb morphology has also converged in the lineages of archaeotheres,
paleotheres, and equines, and their common ansectors. >>

Okay, you have a mother, and she had a mother and on and on until you've got
an ancester that's a Homo erectus. The procesess goes on until you've got
Austrolopithicus and on and on in your single, straight line until you get to
something resembling Pikia back in the Cambrian. It's almost impossible to
find EXACTLY in the fossil record, but it's there. As to progress as such,
that's something that'll always be highly debateable.

eric l.
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