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Re: Scansoriopteryx as Juvenile?



Stephan Pickering (stefanpickering2002@yahoo.com) wrote:

<Mickey Mortimer's interesting, rather thorough exegesis of the two
specimens addresses the question of osteological comparisons to similar
taxa. However, Scansoriopteryx is presumed to be a 2-3 week old baby, and
my query for Mickey: does this alter the hypothetical analysis? I have,
e.g., compared a skeleton of a week old human with a full-grown adult
--both are H. sapiens, but the differences (especially in the skull) are
startling. If Scansoriopteryx is an infant, then how can comparisons be
made to other taxa for which growth series are not known?>

  Well, the obvious thing is that its not. There are no neonate features
of the animal, including an ossified scleral ring, distinct edges and
margins to bones and processes of them, what appears to be well defined
proximal tarsals and metatarsals, carpals, a coracoid with a well-defined
acrocoracoid/biceps tubercle, and compared to *Epidendrosaurus*, a larger
scapula with defined epiphyses, though surface distortions appear to be
present; the vertebrae are also well ossified. *Scansoriopteryx* may be a
sub-adult, but my own observation indicates that 1) it is not a neonate
and 2) it is not even a juvenile.

  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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