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SVP Preview

The SVP abstracts volume is available free online-
I'll wait until after SVP to write in depth summaries of the talk and
posters, but here are a few tidbits from the abstracts-

Allain finds Ceratosaurus closer to tetanurines than coelophysoids;
Torvosaurus, megalosaurids (Eustreptospondylus, Streptospondylus,
Megalosaurus, Afrovenator, "Poekilopleuron" valesdunensis and
Lourinhanosaurus) and spinosaurids form a Spinosauroidea;
Metriacanthosaurus, Erectopus and Neovenator are allosauroids (=carnosaurs).

Buckley reports new Elmisaurus material (manual unguals, distal hindlimbs)
from the Hell Creek three timeslarger than previously known.

Carrano and Sampson refer Lametasaurus to the Ceratosauria, and questionably
Betasuchus and Deltadromeus.

Carvalho and Avilla describe an Aptian-Albian dicreaosaurid from the
Itapecuru Formation of Brazil.  It has high neural spines like its sister
taxon Amargasaurus.

Chiappe and Ji describe three juvenile indeterminate euenantiornithines from
the Yixian Formation.  Wonder how they compare to Liaoxiornis....

Chinnery uses morphometric analyses to state while Avaceratops is valid,
Brachyceratops is probably a juvenile of another ceratopsid taxon.

Chure, Smath, Anderson, Madsen and Galton find that endocranial
pneumatization supports Ceratosaurus as being closer to tetanurines than

Clark, Xu, Forster, Wang and Andres find the Late Jurassic Shishugou
Formation of China to contain- a basal coelurosaur with a troodontid-like
postorbital; the posterior half of a probable ornithomimosaur; a
thyreophoran; new skeletons of Gongbusaurus? wucaiwanensis.

Clarke, Zhou and Zhang describe Yixianornis as an ornithurine.  They must be
using a different definition of Ornithurae (as opposed to the common
Hesperornis+Neornithes), as entering the taxon into Clarke et al.'s
Apsaravis matrix put it more basal than Hesperornis.  We'll have to see....

Cordes describes a new Antarctic bird from the Maastrichtian Lopez de
Bertodano Formation, that while assigned to the Charadriiformes, has some
suspiciously basal characters....

Galton describes new Echinodon sp. material from the Morrison Formation of
Colorado, showing many synapomorphies with heterodontosaurids.

Gilpin, Carpenter and Dicroce describe a new hadrosaur-like iguanodontoid
from the Barremian Yellow Cat Member of the Cedar Mountain Formation of

Henriques, Kellner, Azevedo, Santos and Craik describe a new titanosaurid
from the Late Cretaceous Adamantina Formation of Brazil with a
Nigersaurus-like dentition.

Horner and Marshall hypothesize ceratopsid and some other dinosaur skulls
were completely covered in a keratinous sheath.

Hunt describes "Arkansaurus fridayi" (though does not identify it as such)
and notes resemblence to Ornitholestes.

Hwang, Norell, Ji and Gao describe a basal coelurosaur from the Yixian.  Too
complete for "Huaxiasaurus", perhaps the third Sinosauropteryx specimen
that's not.  Details include- 1.6 meters, teeth unserrated anteriorly,
dorsally expanded dorsal neural spines, no sternal plates, small semilunate
carpal, manual digit 1 robust and wider than radius.  Falls next to
Sinosauropteryx in their matrix, though I think more basal coelurosaurs
might change that.

Irmis reports a Scutellosaurus-like hindlimb from the Lufeng Formation of

New postcrania referred to Azendohsaurus suggest it is a non-dinosaurian
ornithodiran.  Not sure I trust it, as the postcrania are merely "closely
associated" with Azendohsaurus crania.  A herbivorous lagosuchian would be
interesting though.

Karbek presents an IMHO ludicrous hypothesis regarding stegosaurid bipedal
cursoriality.  I'd like to see those columnar hindlimbs and elephantine feet

Kirkland, Deblieux, Smith and Sampson tell of two new ceratopsids
(centrosaurine and chasmosaurine) from the Early Campanian Wahweap Formation
of Utah.

Kobayashi and Barsbold present what is probably "Grusimimus", from the Early
Cretaceous of Mongolia.  More derived than Pelecanimimus and Harpymimus,
less than Garudimimus and ornithomimids.  It lacks an arctometatarsus.
After this and Sinovenator, we just need a non-arctometatarsalian

Longrich presents his "NGMC 2124 is not Sinosauropteryx" hypothesis.
Instead it is more derived, related to Coelurus, Compsognathus and
Ornitholestes.  Sinosauropteryx is said to be more basal, close to
Allosaurus.  He suggests the presence of striping can be observed in the
integument.  Yangchuanosauria is defined as all closer to Yangchuanosaurus
than Aves.  Looks like a junior synonym of Carnosauria to me, but who knows
what support he has....

Lu, Kobayashi, Azuma, Huang, Dong and Qiu present a new oviraptorosaur from
the Late Cretaceous Dalangshan Formation of China that they think shows
oviraptorosaurs were flightless birds.  This is based on the
laterally-facing glenoid (like other maniraptorans), semilunate fused with
metacarpals I and II (unlike primitive oviraptorosaurs, or basal birds with
II and III fused to the semilunate), and a mcIII that does not contact the
carpus.  They then pose a simplistic flightless-flighted post-Archaeopteryx
bird dichotomy.

Maltese shows Camarasaurus has forked chevrons too.  What neosauropods don't

Martin and Burnham suggest that sauropods lacked air-sacs.  Just what were
the pleurocoels for then?

Martinez has a horrible-sounding cladistic analysis of prosauropods.
Plateosaurids are united by two characters- small head; large nares.
Melanorosaurids by one- large dorsal-hindlimb ratio.  Wow.  Those aren't
prone to convergence....

(hmm. getting a bit negative. this next one will help that)

Middleton found metatarsal I torsion correlates with hallucal orientation in
birds and examined extinct taxa.  Non-avians have anteromedially oriented
halluces.  Archaeopteryx has an anteromedially or medially oriented one.
Enantiornithines have medially oriented halluces.  Not the old
unreversed/reversed dichotomy we're used to, eh?

Rauhut reports a fragmentary ceratosaur skull and small theropod material
from the Callovian Lower Canadon Asfalto Formation.

Sankey finds Paronychodon is a morphotype of Richardoestesia isosceles.

Senter analyzes Cosesaurus, Longisquama and Megalancosaurus alongside
theropods and birds to test relationships, though I feel it's futile to use
cladistics as proof against ABSRDists.

Sereno, Conrad and Wilson report two abelisaurids.  One three meters long
from the Early Cretaceous Tiouraren Formation, another hornless one from the
Cenomanian Echkar Formation.

Tidwell and Carpenter find that- Pelorosaurus, Eucamerotus and Cedarosaurus
are related; Venenosaurus resembles an unnamed nearly complete Vectis
Formation taxon; "Pelorosaurus" becklesi resembles an unnamed Cloverly basal

Wilson re-rexamined Titanosaurus and finds only T. araukanicus
(Laplatasaurus) and T. colberti valid.  I generally don't like rampant
nomina-dubiizing, and hope Wilson goes into detail about comparisons and
reasoning when this is published.  Looks like T. colberti needs a new genus
though, unless it's Laplatasaurus or another named form.

Mickey Mortimer