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Re: Frankenstein's Papers



Interestingly, the cladistic analysis tips many turtles out of the crown-group (Testudines). Even _Meiolania_ (which lingered into the Holocene) is recovered as a stem-turtle.

As already found by Joyce (2008, Peabody Museum Bulletin, testudinate phylogeny) and predicted by Joyce & Sterli (2007, Acta Pal. Pol., redescription of *Kayentachelys* showing the absence of testudine features).


Incidentally, Joyce (2008) makes clear that the cleithrum is retained in all stem-turtles and was lost three times independently among crown turtles. *Meiolania* had one, IIRC. This counts as evidence against turtles being crown-diapsids.