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Re: Jeholornis - long-tailed bird in today's Nature



Jaime Headden wrote-

>   Well, not seen the paper, but i will be up to the advocate Tim has
> offered and suggest this disclaimer, to advocate ajn alternate hypothesis
> to a dino-bird link. The animal is a theropod dinosaur, small that evolved
> several convergent features in common with birds, but it is clearly not a
> bird as it lacks feathers.

Heh heh...
If Shenzhouraptor and Jeholornis are synonymous, as I suspect, the
Shenzhouraptor specimen has quite obvious flight feathers.  I think a better
defense would be to claim it's a bird.  Certainly more birdy than
Caudipteryx, which they manage to believe in.  The tail's really not very
deinonychosaurian, lacking the elongate prezygopophyses and chevrons of the
clade.  The chevrons are long enough to contact and perhaps interlock with
each other, the prezygopophyses are only about a third as long as the
centra.  Will say more on the taxon later, perhaps tonight or tomorrow
night.

Mickey Mortimer