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Regarding Hou's Mesozoic Birds of China




Having been finally able to download a workable copy of this paper from Polyglot, I have embarked upon reading it (okay, skimming it) and have several questions and comments stemming from the text.


In his section on Liaoningornis, Hou describes the presence of two paired bones anterior to the sternum which he refers to as "presterna".
From the description, these sound more like the sternum had broken anterior
perhaps?  This looks plausible from the figures.

This may or may not be directly related to Hou's paper, but I am under the impression that Sinornis was synonymized with Cathayornis. If this is true, which species was it synonymized with? C. yandica? C. caudatus? Is there a reference for this? If they are synonyms, than why is there such variation in the amount of fusion present in the manus? The mtcIII of Sinornis does not appear to be fused proximally to mtcII, but in C. yandica, it is. The caudals of C. caudatus _appear_ to not be fused distally into a pygostyle. Is this the correct condition or has the artist made a mistake?

The cervicals of one of the birds is described as "anemocoelous". I have never heard of this before. Could someone describe what that is?

Has anyone ran a cladistic analysis in which more than one species of Confuciusornis was included? If so and it is published, can you provide a reference? If it is not published and you if you wish to, could you contact me offlist regarding it?

Thanks in Advance

Nick Gardner



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