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Re: ISLE OF WIGHT OVIRAPTOROSAUR
I can certainly understand your irritation with reporters who can't
seem to get their facts straight. Especially about this egg-eating thing.
That's one reason I prefer calling them caenagnathiforms (not a perfect
name, but a lot better than oviraptorosaurs in my opinion).
But I am not so concerned about this particular story, as I am the
scientific conclusion that Thecocoelurus is probably not a primitive
segnosaurian. Your reasons for this seem to be based on the plesiomorphic
lack of certain characters, but I see no reason that early segnosaurians
might not have also possessed such plesiomorphies. I think there is plenty
of room for ambiguity on those grounds alone.
P.S. And given my suspicions about "enigmosaur" holophyly, I wouldn't be
terribly surprised if Thecocoelurus turns out to be neither an
oviraptorosaur nor a segnosaurian (or even a stem group thereof). If these
ridges (along the ventral sulcus) did evolve independently in these two
groups, they could have evolved in other coelurosaurs as well.
Darren Naish wrote:
On the Isle of Wight oviraptorosaur represented by BMNH R181, Ken
> I am not questioning it just because of its size. I am mainly
questioning it because segnosaurians also have vertebrae with similar
characteristics (the form of the ventral sulcus is on the list of proposed
enigmosaur synapomorphies). And as Stephan noted, there isn't much to work
with, so I think there is still plenty of room for ambiguity and doubt.
With all due respect, you might like to actually get hold of and read the
paper. There happen to be reasons for our conclusion that it is probably
not a therizinosauroid/segnosaur.
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