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RE: Impact Factor confirms Nature is top research journal

Clint Boyd wrote-

> I wonder if anyone has every looked into how often the typically brief
> taxonomic descriptions found in these journals are followed up with
> full taxonomic descriptions by the same authors, and how many either
> were never fully described or were described years later by someone
> else.

Easy enough to find, for non-neornithine theropods anyway.  Note I only 
included taxa which were first named in Nature, not those (like 
Sinornithomimus) which were first announced in Nature but named elsewhere, nor 
those (like Protarchaeopteryx) which were first named in obscure journals then 
redescribed in Nature.  I didn't count instances like Shuvuuia, where Chiappe 
(2002) did describe and illustrate more than was done in Nature, but only in 
the context of a chapter describing all alvarezsaurids.  So while the skull was 
effectively redescribed (as it was the only complete alvarezsaurid skull 
known), comments on the postcrania are only mixed with descriptions of other 
taxa or generalized alvarezsaurid description.  I also didn't include 
Majungatholus, which is a theropod described as a pachycephalosaur in Nature, 
which was later synonymized with Majungasaurus.  Majungasaurus was redescribed 
in 2007 based mostly on new remains initially reported in 1998 in Science.  So 
... uh... I guess that taxon counts as a win for Science/Nature.
Sereno, Forster, Rogers and Monetta, 1993. Primitive dinosaur skeleton from 
Argentina and the early evolution of Dinosauria. Nature. 361, 64-66. 
Redescription in progress for over a decade for publication as a JVP monograph.
Charig and Milner, 1986. Baryonyx, a remarkable new theropod dinosaur. Nature. 
324, 359-361.
Charig and Milner, 1997. Baryonyx walkeri, a fish-eating dinosaur from the 
Wealden of Surrey. Bulletin of the Natural History Museum of London (Geology). 
53, 11-70.
Coria and Salgado, 1995. A new giant carnivorous dinosaur from the Cretaceous 
of Patagonia. Nature 377:224–226.
Not redescribed yet except for the braincase in 2002 (Coria and Currie).
Buffetaut, Suteethorn and Tong, 1996. The earliest known tyrannosaur from the 
Lower Cretaceous of Thailand. Nature 381(6584): 689-691.
Not redescribed.
Xu, Norell, Kuang, Wang, Zhao and Jia, 2004. Basal tyrannosauroids from China 
and evidence for protofeathers in tyrannosauroids. Nature. 431, 680-684.
Not redescribed.
Xu, Clark, Forster, Norell, Erickson, Eberth, Jia and Zhao, 2006. A basal 
tyrannosauroid dinosaur from the Late Jurassic of China. Nature. 439, 715-718.
Not redescribed.
Gohlich and Chiappe, 2006. A new carnivorous dinosaur from the Late Jurassic 
Solnhofen archipelago. Nature. 440, 329-332.
Gohlich, Tischlinger and Chiappe, 2006. Juravenator starki (Reptilia, 
Theropoda) ein neuer Raubdinosaurier aus dem Oberjura der Sudlichen Frankenalb 
(Suddeutschland): Skelettanatomie und Weichteilbefunde. Archaeopteryx. 24, 1-26.
Dal Sasso and Signore, 1998. Exceptional soft tissue preservation in a theropod 
dinosaur from Italy. Nature. 392, 383-387. 
Described in depth in Signore's thesis, which isn't published yet.
Perez-Moreno, Sanz, Buscalioni, Moratalla, Ortega and Rasskin-Gutman, 1994. A 
unique multitoothed ornithomimosaur dinosaur from the Lower Cretaceous of 
Spain. Nature. 370, 363-367.
Redescribed in Perez-Moreno's unpublished thesis.
Chiappe, Norell and Clark, 1998. The skull of a relative of the stem-group bird 
Mononykus. Nature. 392, 275-278.
Not redescribed.
Perle, Norell, Chiappe and Clark, 1993. Flightless bird from the Cretaceous of 
Mongolia. Nature. 362, 623-626.
Perle, Chiappe, Barsbold, Clark and Norell, 1994. Skeletal morphology of 
Mononykus olecranus (Theropoda: Avialae) from the Late Cretaceous of Mongolia. 
American Museum Novitates. 3105, 1-29. 
Kirkland, Zanno, Sampson, Clark and DeBlieux, 2005. A primitive 
therizinosauroid dinosaur from the Early Cretaceous of Utah. Nature. 435, 84-87.
Not redescribed except for the forelimb (Zanno, 2006) and in Zanno's 
unpublished thesis.
Xu, Tang and Wang 1999. A therizinosauroid dinosaur with integumentary 
structures in China. Nature. 399, 350-354.
Not redescribed.
Xu, Cheng, Wang and Chang, 2002. An unusual oviraptorosaurian dinosaur from 
China. Nature. 419, 291-293.
Balanoff, Xu, Kobayashi, Matsufune and Norell, 2009. Cranial osteology of the 
theropod dinosaur Incisivosaurus gauthieri (Theropoda: Oviraptorosauria). 
American Museum Novitates. 3651, 35 pp.
Ji, Currie, Norell and Ji, 1998. Two feathered dinosaurs from northeastern 
China. Nature. 393, 753-761.
The type specimens haven't been redescribed, though Zhou et al. (2000) did 
describe others in more depth.
Xu, Tan, Wang, Zhao and Tan, 2007. A gigantic bird-like dinosaur from the Late 
Cretaceous of China. Nature. 844-847.
Not redescribed.
Xu and Norell, 2004. A new troodontid dinosaur from China with avian-like 
sleeping posture. Nature. 431, 838-841.
Not redescribed.
Xu, Norell, Wang, Makovicky and Wu, 2002. A basal troodontid from the Early 
Cretaceous of China. Nature. 415, 780-784.
Not redescribed.
Elzanowski and Wellnhofer, 1992. A new link between theropods and birds from 
the Cretaceous of Mongolia. Nature. 359, 821-823.
Elzanowski and Wellnhofer, 1993. Skull of Archaeornithoides from the Upper 
Cretaceous of Mongolia. American Journal of Science. 293-A, 235-252. 
Makovicky, Apesteguía and Agnolín, 2005. The earliest dromaeosaurid theropod 
from South America. Nature. 437, 1007-1011.
Not redescribed.
Novas and Puerta, 1997. New evidence concerning avian origins from the Late 
Cretaceous of Patagonia. Nature. 387: 390-392.
Not redescribed except the ilium by Novas (2004).
Xu, Wang and Wu, 1999. A dromaeosaurid dinosaur with filamentous integument 
from the Yixian Formation of China. Nature. 401, 262-266.
Not redescribed except for the skull (Xu and Wu, 2001) and the pes (Xu and 
Wang, 2000).
Xu, Zhou and Wang, 2000. The smallest known non-avian theropod dinosaur. 
Nature, 408, 705-708.
The holotype has not been redescribed, though two other specimens were 
monographed (Hwang et al., 2002).
Microraptor gui
Xu, Zhou, Wang, Kuang, Zhang and Du, 2003. Four-winged dinosaurs from China. 
Nature. 421, 335-340.
Not redescribed.
Novas and Pol, 2005. New evidence on deinonychosaurian dinosaurs from the Late 
Cretaceous of Patagonia. Nature. 433, 858-861.
Not redescribed.
Zhang, Zhou, Xu, Wang and Sullivan, 2008. A bizarre Jurassic maniraptoran from 
China with elongate ribbon-like feathers. Nature. 455, 1105-1108.
Not redescribed.
Zhou and Zhang, 2002. A long-tailed, seed-eating bird from the Early Cretaceous 
of China. Nature. 418, 405-409.
Not redescribed.
Confuciusornis dui
Hou, Martin, Zhou, Feduccia and Zhang, 1999. A diapsid skull in a new species 
of the primitive bird Confuciusornis. Nature. 399, 679-682. 
Not redescribed.
Walker, 1981. New subclass of birds from the Cretaceous of South America. 
Nature. 292, 51-53.
Not redescribed.
Forster, Chiappe, Sampson, Krause, 1996. The first Cretaceous bird from 
Madagascar. Nature. 382, 532-534.
Forster, Chiappe, Krause and Sampson, 2002. Vorona berivotrensis, a primitive 
bird from the Late Cretaceous of Madagascar. 268-280. in Chiappe and Witmer 
(eds.). Mesozoic Birds: Above the Heads of Dinosaurs. University of California 
Press, Berkeley, Los Angeles, London.
Sanz, Chiappe, Perez-Moreno, Buscalioni, Moratalla, Ortega and Poyato-Ariza, 
1996. An Early Cretaceous bird from Spain and its implications for the 
evolution of avian flight. Nature. 382, 442-445.
Sanz, Pérez-Moreno, Chiappe and Buscalioni, 2002. The Birds from the Lower 
Cretaceous of Las Hoyas (Privince of Cuenca, Spain). pp 209-229. in Chiappe and 
Witmer (eds.). Mesozoic Birds: Above the Heads of Dinosaurs. University of 
California Press, Berkeley, Los Angeles, London. 
Molnar, 1986. An enantiornithine bird from the Lower Cretaceous of Queensland, 
Australia. Nature 322 736-738.
Not redescribed.
Norell and Clarke, 2001. Fossil that fills a critical gap in avian evolution. 
Nature. 409, 181-184. 
Clarke and Norell, 2002. The morphology and phylogenetic position of Apsaravis 
ukhaana from the Late Cretaceous of Mongolia. American Museum Novitates. 3387, 
So, of all 33 theropods described in Nature, 25 (76%) have yet to be fully 
described in a published work.
To be a bit more fair, of the 18 taxa described at least a decade ago, 13 (72%) 
have yet to be fully described. Hmm... doesn't really change the ratio.
All of the taxa which have been redescribed have been done so by at least one 
of the original authors.
Mickey Mortimer
The Theropod Database http://home.comcast.net/~eoraptor/Home.html