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Re: Archie skull pneumatics?

Nicki Gardner (ratites637@hotmail.com) wrote:

<This is becoming frustrating to follow.  According to an earlier post,
teeth were not preserved with *Scansoriopteryx*.  Now we're talking about
how it had serrationless teeth?>

  This is because *Scansoriopteryx* does not preserve any teeth. Unlike
Mickey, I do not regard the matter of synonymy settled, nor do I regard
*Scansoriopteryx* the better name because it's "cooler," and consider both
seperately, until definite synapomorphies demonstrating that either are
both of the same age and lack autapomorphies independant of one another.
The styles of preservation in the two animals, *Scansoriopteryx* and
*Epidendrosaurus*, do not permit a one-to-one comparison, and what is
there relates a superficial difference to begin with. Take the frontals:
in *Scansoriopteryx* these are preserved both showing the side and top of
the T-shaped bones, whereas in *Epidendrosaurus* they are side-on, and
exposed flat, so it is not possible to determine how much distortion is
present due to flattening. Limb bones have a general comparison, but the
Czerkas specimen has larger arms, and incomplete hindlimb bones, which
renders the estimate of limb length a bit on the shaky side. Only
*Epidendrosaurus* preserves teeth and by the initial report, each lacked
<If such variation occurs in the caudal count for *Archaeopteryx*, is it 
possible that there were more than two species?  And whatever happened to 
*Wellnhofferia grandis*?>

  The Solnhofen specimen preserves only 17 caudals, but the series is
incomplete, lacking the last few vertebrae; according to Elzanowski, there
would only have been about 3-4 vertebrae missing, based on comparisons to
other specimens, suggesting the specimen had an original caudal count of

<Approximately 20 caudals for *Sinornithosaurus*!? :-O Whoa.>

  Not published, but may or may not be accurate. This is Mickey's count
from the photos at the AMNH website of NGMC 91, "Dave." Wait for the
paper, certain that it will be in _American Museum Novitates_ ... but
that's what I thought about the *Shuvuuia* monograph that was published in
LA, too....


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.

"Innocent, unbiased observation is a myth." --- P.B. Medawar (1969)

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