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(A little geology humor there)
A little while back, I believe it was Steve Brusette who asked about the
Texas Pleurocoelus. This is what my good friend Matt Wedel had to say about
it during an email conversation we had last summer regarding the Maryland
material. It is cut and pasted from the original so bear with me....
The looong paper on Sauroposeidon will be out in November from Acta
Palaeontologica Polonica. The full ref is:
Wedel, M.J., Cifelli, R.L., and Sanders, R.K. 2000. Osteology, paleobiology,
and relationships of the sauropod dinosaur Sauroposeidon. Acta
In this paper I tackle the Pleurocoelus issue head on. Basically I point out
that large pneumatic fossae or camerae, supposedly autapomorphic for
Pleurocoelus, are found in the verts of most juvenile sauropods and are
therefore symplesiomorphic for at least Neosauropoda, and probably the whole
shebang. The "Pleurocoelus" material from Texas shares no synapomorphies with
the Arundel material that are not also shared with other Titanosauriformes,
the name Pleurocoelus should be restricted to the Arundel material only. No
great surprises there, I think: Ostrom said the same thing back in '70, and
seems to be the general consensus today.
Feel free to forward this message on to the list if you think it might be
helpful. Also, even though I don't have time to keep up with the list, if any
of the list folks want to correspond with me off-list they are more than
to do so.
I have also read the aforementioned "looong" paper and it's a superior piece
of work! I am now also convinced that P. altus is likely the only valid
Arundel suaropod taxon, is distinct from the texas type, and that "Astrodon"
is a nomen dubium. There goes the state dinosaur!
I believe it was announced previously the the paper is available on line but
am not sure.
It's a must read!
Hope this helps.
Thomas R. Lipka