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Cryptodraco vs Cryptosaurus (was Re: Aussiedraco, new Australian pteranodontoid pterosaur)
Don Ohmes <email@example.com> wrote:
> I wonder if the perceived lighthearted approach to dinosaur names w/ "draco"
> in them has anything to do w/ the 'Harry Potter Headspace'...
When it comes to _Dracorex hogwartsia_, this is certainly a
possibility. Other *draco* names appear to be more down-to-earth in
their respective inspirations: _Draconyx_ ("dragon claw"),
_Dracopelta_ ("dragon shield"), _Hippodraco_ ("horse dragon").
_Dracovenator_ alludes to the specimen's location in the foothills of
the Drakensberg (Dragon’s Mountain), as well as its putative habit of
preying upon sauropods. As for _Pantydraco_ ("Pant-y-ffynnon
dragon")... perhaps the less said the better. ;-)
The first dinosaur with *draco* in its name was _Cryptodraco_ ("hidden
dragon"), which was published by Lydekker (1889) as a replacement name
for _Cryptosaurus_ Seeley, 1869. This was because _Cryptosaurus_ was
thought to be preoccupied. A more recent opinion is that this is not
the case, and Lydekker mistook an anonymous 1833 mis-spelling of
_Cystosaurus_ as a validly named _Cryptosaurus_. Thus, _Cryptodraco_
was an unnecessary replacement name:
(This is why Nomenclator Zoologicus lists _Cryptosaurus_ as Anon.
1833; but it doesn't appear to be a valid name).
This would make Seeley's _Cryptosaurus_ the correct name, and
_Cryptodraco_ a junior objective synonym. Unless of course
_Cryptosaurus_ Lydekker is a nomen oblitum. Does anyone know which is
correct: _Cryptosaurus_ or _Cryptodraco_?