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Re: Suchosaurus, Baryonyx and Martinavis

On 10/2/07, Tim Williams <twilliams_alpha@hotmail.com> wrote:
> As Denver is alluding to, this business of determining seniority is so very 
> arbitrary and subjective.
> _Troodon_ trumps _Stenonychosaurus_, but _Baryonyx_ trumps _Suchosaurus_, 
> even though they're completely analogous situations.

I always liked the name _Stenonychosaurus_, myself. Why'd we get rid
of it, again?

> The added complication is that both _Troodon_, _Carcharodontosaurus_ and 
> _Baryonyx_ are all nominative genera for established higher-level taxa 
> (Troodontidae,
> Carcharodontosauridae, Baryonychinae).  Then again, Ceratopsidae continues to 
> be used, even though _Ceratops_ is almost always regarded as a nomen dubium.

Not to mention Hadrosauridae. (Titanosauridae, OTOH, doesn't seem to
be used much anymore.)

> > I still prefer the name Baryonyx.
> Alas, aesthetic preferences are not covered by the ICZN.  There's a lot of 
> god-awful dinosaur names I'd like to see the back of...

Well, _Suchosaurus_ is a pretty good name in terms of etymology, at least.

I don't see any problem with continuing to use _Baryonyx_,
_Troodontidae_, and _Stenonychosaurus_, myself. _Carcharodontosaurus_
has a  different situation, though, as there is no newer name with
better type material -- it does seem like a good candidate for a

Incidentally, this raises an interesting code-related issue. It seems
that, whatever the status of _Suchosaurus_, Suchosauridae is still the
valid name for the corresponding family (which presumably would
include _Baryonyx_ and _Spinosaurus_) under the ICZN. But
_Spinosauridae_ has been given a  phylogenetic definition. Of course,
the PhyloCode is not in effect yet, but suppose it were in effect and
_Spinosauridae_ were registered (e.g., with the definition
"Clade(_Baryonyx_ + _Spinosaurus_)") as a clade name. We'd have a
situation where Family Spinosauridae would be invalid under the ICZN,
but Clade _Spinosauridae_ would be valid under the PhyloCode.
Mike Keesey