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Re: Today's Stupid Question

> Date: Wed, 15 May 2002 20:33:04 +0200
> From: "Fam Jansma" <fam.jansma@worldonline.nl>
>> Can anyone explain how the titanosauriform Ornithopsis -- known
>> only from a couple of dorsal verts on display at the NHM, London --
>> came to be called "bird face"?
> Seely [...] named the verts this way, was because he found the
> amount of air-holes (pneumacies, wrong spelling, my English is
> leaving me), which are also shared by birds.

Right, no problem with the vertebral pneumaticity, but that (you'd
think) would lead to name like _Ornithospondylus_.

> Is [_Ornithopsis_] a trully diagnostic genus or is it referable to
> Pelorosaurus? And what is the status of Macrurosaurus and Dinodocus?
> Obscure Wealden sauropods, give me a lot of headaches...

> Date: Wed, 15 May 2002 14:56:37 -0500
> From: "Williams, Tim" <TiJaWi@agron.iastate.edu>
> It's Migraine City where British sauropods are concerned.  My
> information is that the type material for most (and perhaps all -
> _Pelorosaurus_ included) of the above taxa is probably non-diagostic
> at the genus level.

Can I just drop in a plug here for HP Naish's excellent book
_Dinosaurs of the Isle of Wight_?  Its sauropod chapter does a find
job of sifting through various scraps and fragments, and figuring out
what's significant and what isn't.  (Come to think of it, so does its
theropod chapter.  And no doubt the ornithiscian chapters will too, if
I ever get around to reading them :-)

You can buy it by mail order direct from the publisher, the
Palaeontological Society.  (It's a British society, so its name
doesn't have to specify a nationality :-)  Go to
for details.  Every home should have one!

 _/|_    _______________________________________________________________
/o ) \/  Mike Taylor   <mike@miketaylor.org.uk>   www.miketaylor.org.uk
)_v__/\  "There ought to be limits to freedom" -- George W. Bush,
         Presidential candidate, complaining about parody web sites.