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Re: My 1st Dinosaur classification



Mike,
Your cladogram is pretty close. But Ceratosauridae should be shown paraphyletically giving rise to Abelisauridae (not as sister groups). And Ornitholestidae paraphyletically gives rise to the Ornithimimidae-to-AVES clade.
And thirdly, the line going down to theropods should hook up on a node between Massospondylidae and Plateosauridae. I am testing the idea that Massospondylidae split off first, and then a sister group split between the theropod line and a plateosaurid-sauropod line. Admittedly this is less tidy than George's phylogeny (which consolidates the fifth-toe reduction and loss into fewer lines), but evolution isn't always very tidy. I need to delve into prosauropods a lot more when I have time (theropods have been getting more than their fair share of my time).
I was going to put in a Plesion Thecodontosaurus, perhaps between Massospondylidae and Plateosauridae, but I want to get the main clades settled in my mind before inserting various plesions (plesia). The fact that some dinosaur families are much bigger than small ones (like Herrerasauridae) is to be expected. After all, it's not as bad as having one Order for the aardvark and another Order for thousands of rodents (which is accepted almost universally in spite of the large size differential).
----Gotta run, Ken
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