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RE: Andrew McDonald response re: European iguanodonts



Tim Williams wrote-

> I hope Mickey Mortimer had a good night's sleep.... ;-)

Oh I did, well rested enough to counter your points once again. ;)

> Titanosauridae has already been dumped. Ceratopsidae should be dumped.
>
> Using your logic, Deinodontidae should be used instead of
> Tyrannosauridae, because the former has priority (it was named first).
> But we don't, because _Deinodon_ is a nomen dubium.
>
> There's no point naming a family-level clade after a genus, unless
> you're going to include that genus in the phylogenetic definition of
> that clade. Otherwise, you can't be sure if the nominative genus
> actually belongs inside the clade.

Bullet point time!

- Deinodontidae should be used, only historical subjectivity had led to its 
abandonment.

- The ICZN has no rule saying family-level taxa cannot be based on nomina 
dubia, that's your own rule.  Follow it if you want, but don't pretend it has 
any authority behind it.

- Nomina dubia can be used in the phylogenetic definition, and should be when 
they're a clade's eponymous genus.  Note that since the Phylocode doesn't care 
about Linnaean ranks, to be consistant you'd have to dump Titanosauria, 
Titanosauriformes, Ceratopsia, etc. too.  Unless you want to be dishonest and 
pretend Titanosauria only refers to the large size and has nothing to do with 
Titanosaurus, which is just a hypocritical attempt to preserve names you like 
and isn't respectable (and could be done for the family-level names using the 
same logic).  But luckily, we can tell Titanosaurus and Ceratops (and Deinodon, 
Podokesaurus, Metriacanthosaurus, etc.) belong to the clades named after them 
as currently envisioned.

Or it would be lucky if we needed to actually follow the rules, but as it 
stands we'll just break them as it suits our needs and make up new rules we 
like better.

Mickey Mortimer