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RE: Today's Stupid Question



> From: owner-dinosaur@usc.edu [mailto:owner-dinosaur@usc.edu]On Behalf Of
> Mike Taylor
>
> >> 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_.

In this case, "opsis" = "appearance".  Hence, "of bird like appearance", not
"with a birdy face".

                Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
                Vertebrate Paleontologist
Department of Geology           Director, Earth, Life & Time Program
University of Maryland          College Park Scholars
                College Park, MD  20742
http://www.geol.umd.edu/~tholtz/tholtz.htm
http://www.geol.umd.edu/~jmerck/eltsite
Phone:  301-405-4084    Email:  tholtz@geol.umd.edu
Fax (Geol):  301-314-9661       Fax (CPS-ELT): 301-405-0796