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Coeluridae as a Wastebasket for Coelurosaurs

Ken Kinman (kinman@hotmail.com) wrote:

<Now responding to David, "wastebasket" is a subjective term,
and I only use it for groups I am convinced are polyphyletic (or
so paraphyletic as to be counterproductive----such as
Lophotrochozoa or Condylarthra).>

  What we think we know is that these last two taxa are
paraphyletic, or somewhat polyphyletic... Condylarthra
especially may comprise essentially the basal members of many
subungulate and ungulate groups. But *Coelurus*, however, has
been suggested in recent and ongoing analyses, especially by Tom
Holtz, to be a maniraptoran, so using the group Coeluridae to
represent a wastebasket (instead of not using a name at all) for
coelurosaurs generally is not a good idea. Maniraptoriformes is
well established, unless the lack of use here is the presence of
an -iformes suffix....

<Mike Keesey and I organize our wastebaskets differently.>

  Mikey Keesey tried to avoid wastebaskets. We doesn't organize
them at all, but places them on the stem under the clearest node
he can find, or is suggested.

<The {{Ornithomimidae to AVES}} clade seems to be cladistically 
equivalent to Maniraptoriformes Holtz (1996?).>

  1995a,b, and it _is_ the (*Ornithomimus* + Neornithes) node,
by definition.

<I don't feel compelled to name it, but since it has been named,
I put in this synonymy. Since the contents of
"Maniraptoriformes" depends on whose cladogram you are using,>

  How so? As a synonym for Coelurosauria? The only coelurosaurs
that don't seem to fall into Maniraptoriformes are various taxa,
*Compsognathus* et al., *Dryptosaurus*, *Ornitholestes*,
*Nedcolbertia*, *Scipionyx*, and probably even Tyrannosauroidea
(!), that are put here based on morphology. Indeterminate [but
most likely being] maniraptorans like Troodontidae and even
possibly *Bagaraatan* can be applied specifically, based on
comparison. Maniraptoriformes, by analyses stretching back to
Gauthier's 1984 PhD dissertation and it's 1986 publication,
includes *Ornithomimus*, *Oviraptor*, *Troodon*, *Velociraptor*,
*Archaeopteryx*, and "true" "birds."

  Holtz, 1999, finds the following phylogeny to be the strict
concensus of most analyses as published:

  (*Compsognathus* (*Ornithomimus* (*Oviraptor* (*Velociraptor*
(*Archaeopteryx* + Birds)))) ... troodontids, tyrannosaurids,
and therizinosaurids, among others, tend to move about. Sereno
and Holtz both tend to find *Ornithlestes* between
*Compsognathus* and *Ornithomimus*, so this appears to be the
concensus arrangement. Making a wastebasket that doesn't exist,
in my opinion, doesn't help.

<I could formally split Saurischiformes into two separate
orders, but a theropod order could be paraphyletic to a
sauropodomorph order, which would make theropods doubly
paraphyletic (to Aves and sauropodomorphs) or even triply
paraphyletic if Ornithischiformes is a theropod exgroup.>

  Based on nearly all analyses, though Paul and Olshevsky find
herbivorous dinosaurs together, Theropods and Sauropodomorphs
are mutally exclusive, and are defined and considered as such,
within Saurischia -- it is perhaps foolish to not retain the
establishment on the basis that they may be paraphyletic, or
doubly paraphyletic. Ornithischia is exclusive of both, 1) by
most analyses (Sereno, 1986, 1999; Benton et al., 1999; Novas,
1991, 1994, 1995, 1997....; Sereno and Novas, 1993; Sereno et
al., 1993 [Eoraptor]) that consider their relationships, and 2)
in the broadest sense, as no theropod can be an ornithischian,
or vice versa, and in the same context, neither can any

<I code the two dinosaur orders as sister groups, but such a
united clade doesn't have any unequivocal synapomorphies>

  Oh, I disagree. So does Novas, 1991, and Sereno and Novas,
1993, and Novas, 1993, and Novas and Sereno, 1993, who found
upwards of five unambiguous synapomorphies of a birds +
*Herrerasaurus* group that excluded both sauropodomorphans, and
ornithischians; Sereno, 1994, found a lot more that contains
*Lesothosaurus*, Thyreophora, Marginocephalia, and Ornithopoda,
as Ornithischia, excluding theropods and sauropodomorphans; and
both Upchurch, 1998 and Wilson and Sereno, 1999, find more than
five or so synapomorphies of the *Vulcanodon* and other sauropod
clades, and a *Plateosaurus* + *Saltasaurus* clade, which define
Sauropoda and Sauropodomorpha. These analyses show [1] that
Dinosauria is monophyletic, and [2] it includes two mutually
exclusive groups, Ornithischia and Saurischia, the latter which
[3] contains two mutually exclusive groups, Theropoda and
Sauropodomorpha, which cannot be further moved around without
collapsing internal nodes beyond recognizability.

<and also has a shorter history of usage as a formal taxon (I
may formally combine them into one order eventually, but not 

  Owen named Dinosauria in the mid 1800's, just a few decades
later were the direct subgroups defined. It was also considered
after that, more recently, that everything was indeed
polyphyletic and it was wiser to retain them as just subgroups
of a clade Thecodontia, because no one could find synapomorphies
beyond predatory or herbivorous specializations. Until 1991,
that is, and Sereno's and Novas' PhD works, and Gauthier's 1984
PhD work.

<...a single paraphyletic taxon like Coeluridae (with one or
more exgroups) when there is almost no consensus as to how they
are all interrelated.>

  Sereno et al., 1994, 1996, 1998; Holtz, 1995a,b, 1996, 1999;
Padian, Hutchinson, and Holtz, 1999; Sereno, 1999 ... these all
contrdict the previous statement, and especially where Padian,
Hutchinson and Holtz (1999) and Holtz (1999) who detailed the
true consensus.

Jaime A. Headden

  Where the Wind Comes Sweeping Down the Pampas!!!!

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