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Re: Some thoughts on AVES

I whole-heartedly agree. A movement toward more apomorphy(character)-based cladistic definitions is a cladisto-eclectic compromise well worth pursuing.
Now we just need to do the same thing for Aves. The question is, just where among theropods is there a serial character transformation which even approaches the clarity of the mammal distinction?
NJPharris wrote:
A definition for Mammalia along the lines of "the first organism to possess three auditory ossicles homologous to those of living mammals and all of its descendants" would be absolutely lovely, as far as I'm concerned (since it both captures exactly a traditional conception of Mammalia and ensures that the group thus defined will be monophyletic).

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