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RE: Pterosaur.net

Michael Mortimer <mickey_mortimer111@msn.com> wrote:

> This would be very time consuming and
> difficult for the general pulic to do, and is the exact kind
> of thing I would enjoy seeing handled on Pterosaur.net for
> Aidachar and Sultanuvaisia.  [snip] I don't trust
> Nessov's opinions on them, even if I did have his 1986 paper
> reassigning them to fish. 

A bit of a tangent here... There was a similar case when a "Jurassic bird" 
called _Priscavolucris montsechi_ was described from Spain by Gomez Pallerola 
(1979).  The name _Priscavolucris_ means "ancient bird".  Anyway, it turned out 
that the specimen was actually a shark (_Lissodus_).  Apparently the way the 
specimen was preserved, especially the way the fins were splayed, gave it a 
superficial resemblance to _Archaeopteryx_.  (That's what I heard - I haven't 
seen the original paper.)  Also, because '_Priscavolucris_' was found at the 
Montsec locality (where real birds have been found) it's of Early Cretaceous 
age, not Late Jurassic.

> His Asiahesperornis is probably Hesperornis, 

The entire genus _Hesperornis_ needs a work-over, given how many species have 
been referred to the genus, including many quite recently (Martin and Lim, 
2002):_bairdi_, _chowi_, _macdonaldi_, _mengeli_.  Dyke et al. (2006) retain 
_Asiahesperornis_ as a separate genus, noting several differences between _A_ 
and _H_.

>  his Turanoceratops braincase belongs to a sauropod.  

There's also an ankylosaur osteoderm mixed in with the original 
_Turanoceratops_ material.  As I'm sure you're (Mickey) aware, the 
_Turanoceratops_ material has been reviewed (Sues and Averianov, 2009), and 
pared back to include only ceratopsian elements.

> The popularity of Darren
> Naish's blog, with its technical writing and references,
> shows the public enjoys this level of detail as much as the
> experts do.

It has to be said though that Darren sets the bar very high.  Some of his 
pterosaur blogs are much better than some papers I've read, and could readily 
be converted into publications.