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Re: New Oldest Bird?

M.J.Murphy wrote-

> I haven't seen anyone mention this, ie. a short article in New Scientist
concerning Pedopenna daohugouensis, another small Chinese Dinosaur with
"large leg feathers" that may be older than archaeopteryx.  Story can be
found at:
> http://www.newscientist.com/channel/life/mg18524874.700

>From the article-

"The fossilised leg bones of Pedopenna daohugouensis reveal it to be as
bird-like as archaeopteryx, ..."

No, Xu and Zhang found that it was less closely related to birds than
Archaeopteryx or scansoriopterygids, because of its unreversed hallux and
short toes.  Of course, Middleton's work suggests Archaeopteryx lacked a
reversed hallux too, and scansoriopterygid remains seem equivocal when one
considers the need to examine metatarsal torsion instead of just apparent
hallux orientation.
And why is Archaeopteryx never capitalized or italicized in the article?

Mickey Mortimer
Undergraduate, Earth and Space Sciences
University of Washington
The Theropod Database - http://students.washington.edu/eoraptor/Home.html