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Re: Anurognathus dorsal frill

Seeing is believing

With regard to techniques for studying anatomy (skeletal or otherwise) in 
pterosaurs, or indeed other fossil vertebrates. The use of ultra violet 
light is a well-established if under-used technique (that can also be 
used to sunburn your eyeballs). Note, however, that the structures 
'revealed' by UV techniques are (at least so far as I have seen in 
pterosaurs) also visible using other techniques such as ordinary 
binocular microscopes, or even the naked eye. UV just helps to make 
things a bit clearer. By contrast, the computer-based technique that has 
been reported by Peters on the DML identifies structures that, so far as 
I am aware, have not been previously seen in particular specimens (even 
using UV light) and are not evident to other workers using standard 
techniques (e.g. light microscopy). Moreover, so far as I am aware, there 
has been no independent verification of any of the numerous new 
structures 'seen' by Peters. I am quite happy with the many 'low quality' 
drawings of pterosaurs that have been published by workers such as 
Bennett, Frey, Kellner, Martill, Padian and Wellnhofer because they match 
what is evident in the actual fossil specimens and they are reliable. 


(PS I'm not in the list of pterosaur workers because even horses can draw 
better than me, apparently). 

David M. Unwin PhD

Institut fur Palaontologie, MUSEUM FUR NATURKUNDE 
Zentralinstitut der Humboldt-Universitat zu Berlin
Invalidenstrasse 43, D-10115 Berlin, GERMANY

Email: david.unwin@rz.hu-berlin.de

Telephone numbers:
0049 30 2093 8577 (office)
0049 30 2093 8862 (department secretary)
0049 30 2093 8868 (fax)