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Re: Feathered dinosaur in Nature
The specimen described in
MARK NORELL, QIANG JI, KEQIN GAO, CHONGXI YUAN, YIBIN ZHAO & LIXIA WANG
(2002). Palaeontology: 'Modern' feathers on a non-avian dinosaur. Nature
is figured in the catalogue of the Italian exhibit "Feathered dinosaurs
from China", published the last December. It is labeled "feathered
dromeosaur, genus and species not determined" (Dromeosauro piumato - genere
e specie non determinati). The exhibit has been in Bologna and will be in
the town of Ancona the next May and June. I have some photographs of that
specimen here on my table. Its actual Museum number results to be LPM0200
(LPM0201 is the counterslab; the usual mess). I guess that LPM0200 had to
be exposed in Italy, but at the last moment someone decided to send here
another specimen. In fact, we have here a second, similar specimen, which
is nearly surely a chimera (i.e. a composite specimen). Of course, this
does not mean that LPM0200/201 is a chimera. "Our" specimen has a
"dromeosaurian" stiff tail with a tuft of feathers at the distal end.
Pectoral girdles, hind limbs and forelimbs are truly avian in my opinion
and this is the reason I suspect it is a chimera. We will study it in detail.
When I saw for the first time LPM0200/201 last December, I considered the
feathers along the hind limbs as the overlapping long remiges of the ?right
forelimb (not feathers belonging to the hind limbs), but I saw just a good
photo and not the original stuff, thus mine is just a feeling.
Let's wait for a more detailed description.
Fabio M. Dalla Vecchia
Fabio M. Dalla Vecchia, PhD
Museo Paleontologico Cittadino
Via Valentinis 134