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Re: neoflightless dinosaurs

From: GSP1954@aol.com
Reply-To: GSP1954@aol.com
To: john_conway@mac.com, dinosaur@usc.edu
Subject: Re: neoflightless dinosaurs
Date: Sun, 29 Sep 2002 23:22:35 EDT

In a message dated 9/28/2 10:40:44 AM, Conway wrote:

<<What about a third hypothesis: Archy is more closely related to modern
birds, but flight developed earlier, before the Dromy + Aves node. So
both may have inherited advanced flight, but were in the process of
losing it.>>

Well,to make matters worse Archaeopteryx might,of course,have been a very aberrant bird.Didn't Martin conclude Archie was some sort of archosaurian "primate" ,a specialised trunkclimber? In "The Origin and evolution of bird" this is illustrated very well,an Archie with an erect stance and widely spaced arms.Furhtermore not all of the Archies had a keeled sternum.This,together with them living on islands,might mean they were in the process of losing flight,and evolving into neoflightless trunkclimbers.This together means Archie isn't really a very typical early bird,but an oddly specialised one.It's like only having highly atypical hoatzins or flamingos as the only known representatives of the neognaths!