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Re: Nomina Dubia Part II: Rapator

Rob Gay <rob@dinodomain.com> wrote:

> > If this character (forked vs non-forked ischium) is not
> > taxonomically significant AND it's the ONLY character used
> > to distinguish _Archaeopteryx_ from _Shenzhouraptor_....
> > then yes, we would synonymize the two.<
> What is your test for determining if a character is
> taxonomically significant? Wouldn't its significance only be
> determined after putting the character into a cladistic
> analysis? How do you make the determination yourself?

Ummm... just to be clear, I was responding to a completely hypothetical 
question raised by Mickey M.  I was in no way advocating synonymizing 
_Shenzhouraptor_ with _Archaeopteryx_.  Neither was Mickey.

However, I would advocate synonymizing _Shenzhouraptor_ under _Jeholornis_... 
but that's another story.  :-)