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RE: Triassic protofeathers and fake-heads

Mickey Mortimer wrote:

>The Echinodon armor is more likely helodermatid, not ankylosaurian
>(Barrett and Clarke, 2000).

Gila Monsters in Early Cretaceous England, huh?

The gist of the abstract is that the ossicles look much more like dermal
osteoderms from the head of helodermatid lizards than they do the ossicles
of ankylosaur armour - so the granicones are more likely to belong to a
helodermatid lizard than an ankylosaur.  I wonder if the study looked at
_Scutellosaurus_ or _Scelidosaurus_.

Barrett and Clarke (2000) also regard _Echinodon_ as a heterodontosaurid (as
does Sereno), and no other heterodontosaurid is known to have had armour.
If _Echinodon_ turns out to be a basal thyreophoran (or a basal ankylosaur
or ankylosauromorph), however, then the identity of the Purbeck granicones
might need to be re-assessed.



Timothy J. Williams 

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

Phone: 515 294 9233 
Fax:   515 294 3163