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Re: Sinopterus cladistically



David Peters (davidrpeters@earthlink.net) wrote:

<Those long legs are a dsungaripterid character -- the basal stock. The
overbite is interesting. Wish I could see the tail. If those sclerotic
rings(?) are real, they're enormous and hard to believe. All in all, it
looks like a great transitional pterosaur. Pass on the reference when more
is available.>

  From what I have available, a possible *Tupuxuara* skeleton has long
legs and wings that look like this. My personal observation in the
pteranodont lineage, which includes a basal toothy dsungaripterid stock,
developed the long skull first, and shortening progresses to *Tapejara
wellnhoferi*. Consequently, I restore *Tapejara* with long legs and a
relatively short trunk, possibly with an overbite, though the underbite in
*Dsungaripterus* and possibly *Thalassodromeus* may reflect feeding style
and thus length of jaw to skull will have little phylogenetic
significance. The animal appears to resemble in the skull of *Tapejara
imperator* very much, and they may be sister taxa, or closer, with *T.
wellnhoferi* at the end. Might be good to separate *T. imperator* as a new
"taxon" from typic *T. wellnhoferi* so that taxonomic confusion isn't
conflated. I think the orbital area is strongly distorted, as many
temporal elements appear to be broken or loose in the photo. Long legs are
seen convergently in *Pterodaustro* and this may also reflect feeding
styles. Note that long limbs in many bird clades that are waders versus
swimmers or flyers, even closely allied, vary when the ecology is
considered. Food for thought. If anyone has access to the Chinese I would
like to know, I prefer having both references, actually, for as Jerry has
said, the original Chinese of many of the Kexue Tongbao/Chinese Science
Bulletin articles are the proper citation. I have both english and Chinese
*Jinzhousaurus* (iguanodontoid from Jiufotang levels) articles, for
instance.

  Cheers,

=====
Jaime A. Headden

  Little steps are often the hardest to take.  We are too used to making leaps 
in the face of adversity, that a simple skip is so hard to do.  We should all 
learn to walk soft, walk small, see the world around us rather than zoom by it.

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