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Re: No Cretaceous placental mammals?
----- Original Message -----
From: "Dino Guy Ralph" <email@example.com>
Sent: Friday, June 22, 2007 7:52 PM
This is very out of date. While it is true that the fossil evidence for
extant bird orders is largely fragmentary, the situation is not as bad as
you suggest. Read Sylvia Hope's chapter in "Mesozoic Birds" for a good
That said, I cannot help thinking that that chapter is very optimistic. For
example, some isolated bones are referred to Pelecaniformes based on a
single character, even though none of the diagnostic characters of
Neornithes is situated in that bone in the first place, so if that one
character ever turns out not to be diagnostic only for Pelecaniformes, we
won't know if the bone belongs to Neornithes at all.