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RE: Bakker's Brontosaurus and Late Cretaceous populations
Mike Lima wrote:
A couple years back I had heard that Bakker considered Brontosaurus a valid
genus separate from Apatosaurus and had tried to find out what anatomical
differences he noted between the two genera but couldn't find anything
beyond statements to the effect of "Dr. Bakker is finding evidence to
support his claim that Brontosaurus is a valid genus." Now a couple years
later, I tried to find more on the subject but I'm still only finding
similar vague statements. Has Bakker ever published or even stated on what
grounds he distinguishes between the two?
In 1998, Bakker did publish a study that mentioned a skull (TATE 099) that
he referred to _A. excelsus_. (This was in his "Dinosaur Mid-Life Crisis"
paper, which also erected the new genus _Eobrontosaurus_ for _A. yahnahpin_)
He argued that the differences between TATE 099 and the skull of _A. ajax_
(CM 11162) were sufficient to justify generic separation; thus, he revived
the genus _Brontosaurus_ for _excelsus_. However, Bakker did not actually
describe the new skull, nor give reasons why it should be referred to _A.
excelsus_ (= Bakker's _Brontosaurus excelsus_). I haven't seen or heard
anything more on this.