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RE: Greg Paul is right (again); or "Archie's not a birdy"
> Date: Sun, 31 Jul 2011 07:11:22 +0000
> From: email@example.com
> To: firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com
> Roberto Takata <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
> >>Yet another reason why the definition of "Aves" should not rest on
> >> _Archaeopteryx_.
> > I think it doesn't matter that much. Tree *topology* is more important
> > than names. We could restrict Aves as crown-group or include
> > Dromeosaurinae: the phylogenetical relationships will be the same.
> In general, I agree that a rose is a rose. But in the case of 'Aves',
> the name has a lot of undesirable typological baggage, because being a
> member of clade Aves has been equated with being a "bird" in the
> vernacular sense.
It's a mystery why that would be. :)
Rather than simply surrendering to the threat of baggage, maybe explain to
people (however young*) how members of _Aves_ differ from one another.
* = _Dinosaur Train_ is a great show, but it can't do the job alone.
> The inclusion of forms like _Archaeopteryx_ and
> _Jeholornis_ in Aves leads (and potentially misleads) people into
> extrapolating behaviors of extant birds to these and other fossil
> "birds" that are much further down the tree. In other words, being a
> member of Aves makes an animal a "bird", and therefore gives rise to
> the assumption that they possessed behaviors that we associate with
> extant birds, but which have little or no supporting evidence - such
> as powered flight or perching.
Okay. Let's assume we somehow get people to stop calling them _Aves_ and
They'll probably make those same assumptions when you start describing those
organisms (feathers, etc)