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Re: Bristle-like scales in ornithischian dinosaurs (paper by Saveliev & Alifanov)
I have access to the paper. If anyone needs it feel free to e-mail me offlist.
There is only one other page beyond the preview content, and it doesn't say too
much more. The authors argue for including ornithischians in the "feathered
dinosaur" camp, but their interpretation of the structures (note: there are
only drawings in the paper, no images of the actual fossils) goes against what
we currently know of feather development (e.g., Sawyer and Knapp 2003,
Dhouailly 2009) in which feathers form from scale primordia—halting scale
development entirely. It seems much more likely that we are seeing a case of
convergence between coelurosaurs and some ornithischians, which explains why
the structures are similar, but far from identical.
I suspect the upcoming paper from Godefroit et al. (which should include
evo-devo researcher Danielle Dhouailly) should have more details on this
(including the pictures of the damned fossils themselves). It will be
interesting to see if the interpretations are different.
Dhouailly, D. 2009. A New Scenario for the Evolutionary Origin of Hair,
Feather, and Avian Scales. J.Anat. Vol.214:587-606.
Sawyer, R.H., Knapp, L.W. 2003. Avian Skin Development and the Evolutionary
Origin of Feathers. J.Exp.Zool.(Mol.Dev.Evol) Vol.298B:57-72.
"I am impressed by the fact that we know less about many modern [reptile] types
than we do of many fossil groups." - Alfred S. Romer
----- Original Message -----
From: Ben Creisler <email@example.com>
To: firstname.lastname@example.org; VRTPALEO@usc.edu
Sent: Sunday, July 6, 2014 5:08 PM
Subject: Bristle-like scales in ornithischian dinosaurs (paper by Saveliev &
I just came across this recent paper in English (I don't have the pdf)
that sheds light on the "bristles" described by Alifanov and Saveliev
(2014) for their two proposed new "hypsilophodont" taxa. The first two
pages of the text can be previewed in the Look Inside box and the
references can be viewed below.
tried to translate the Russian abstract. This makes their ideas a bit
S. V. Saveliev & V. R. Alifanov (2014)
A new type of skin derivatives in Ornithischian dinosaurs from the
late Jurassic of Transbaikalia (Russia).
Doklady Biological Sciences 456(1): 182-184
No abstract but this passage from the text will do:
Integumentary remains of ornithischian dinosaurs are usually
represented by bristle-like outgrowths, which are arranged on the
matrix surfaces either chaotically or in bunches or regular groups of
varying density. Some samples show the basal portion of the "bristles"
in the form of a small plate with a rounded proximal end. One plate
can give rise to several outgrowths of various lengths. We proposed to
call these integumentary structures "bristle-like scales." No such
structures have previously been found in association with ornithopod
or ornithischian remains.
[This appears to explain the "dermal scales divided into 'bristles'"
that made me question my original (and, as it turned out, accurate)