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RE: Monotremes

> > > if you say "monotreme"/"monotrema", I know you're talking about a
> > > mammal that lays eggs rather than having live birth.

But not the other way around. The monotremes have _retained_ the condition of laying eggs. We can be fairly sure that lots of Mesozoic mammals (especially mammals in the wider senses) also laid eggs, "even though" they were not monotremes.

very well....so the next time a kid asks me "what's a word for egg-laying mammals?" (and yes, I have been asked this before)....what do I tell him?

do I say "synapsids"?

> Is it "parochial" because its human?

No, it's parochial because all egg-laying mammals that aren't monotremes happen to have died out. Overlooking the important point that there were other egg-laying mammals is parochial.

ah. okay.

> I'll just say that if they're not monotremes, fine, then we don't call
> them monotremes...

Bingo. Monotremes are monotremes -- other egg-laying mammals were not monotremes.

in paleontology, yes.

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