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Re: Ornithomimids and Ratites (was Re: Big Dinosaur Prints Found)

Nick Pharris wrote:

I can't think of any South American ones off the top of my head, but
_Timimus_ is supposed (on the basis of a couple of bones) to be an
ornithomimid from Australia (also, of course, a hotbed of ratite evolution).

I don't know if this has been published or not (I heard it word-of-mouth), but _Timimus hermani_ (Dinosaur Cove, Victoria; Aptian) is now regarded as Theropoda _incertae sedis_. I know Pat and Tom Rich originally described _Timimus_ as an ornithomimosaur, based on the slender proportions of the femora. It *might* be an ornithomimosaur, it's just that based on the available material (two femora), there is not enough evidence to warrant such a referral. I'm not even sure if _Timimus_ can be confidently regarded as a coelurosaur, since the femur also bears an uncanny resemblance to that of _Elaphrosaurus_.

Interestingly, other putative ornithomimosaur material (ungual, pubis, vertebrae) is known from this part of Australia, of about the same age.



Timothy J. Williams

USDA/ARS Researcher
Agronomy Hall
Iowa State University
Ames IA 50014

Phone: 515 294 9233
Fax:   515 294 3163

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