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Re: Wilkinson's new pterosaur paper

Comments inserted below.

----- Original Message ----- From: "david peters" <davidrpeters@earthlink.net>
To: "jrc" <jrccea@bellsouth.net>
Cc: <dinosaur@usc.edu>
Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 9:04 AM
Subject: Re: Wilkinson's new pterosaur paper

So far, in the widest possible variety of pterosaurs, there is no evidence for a wing tip to hind leg connection.

I've not seen any convincing evidence of a wing/hindlimb connection either. But, I'm not ready to exclude it as a possibility. It is certainly counterproductive in terms of aerodynamic efficiency for marine soarers though.

The two wing configurations 1) wingtip to elbow and 2) wingtip to thigh are fundamentally different. The first has its origin distally, like a bird. The other proximally, like a flying squirrel. You cannot have one AND the other in the same clade.

I wouldn't argue that -- but, the trailing edge doesn't go to the elbow; it usually passes about 40% of the length of the humerus behind the elbow. I suspect that the trailing edge and wing root generally attach to the body along the ilium (sp??). But, that isn't proven either.