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Fwd: Gastral basket in basal birds and their close relatives (free pdf)



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---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Ben Creisler <bcreisler@gmail.com>
Date: Sun, Apr 19, 2015 at 9:27 PM
Subject: Gastral basket in basal birds and their close relatives (free pdf)
To: dinosaur@usc.edu


Ben Creisler
bcreisler@gmail.com

A new paper:

Jingmai K. O'CONNOR, ZHENG Xiao-Ting, WANG Xiao-Li, ZHANG Xiao-Mei &
ZHOU Zhong-He (2015)
The gastral basket in basal birds and their close relatives:  size and
possible function.
Vertebrate PalAsiatica 53(2): 133-152
http://www.ivpp.cas.cn/cbw/gjzdwxb/xbwzxz/201504/P020150420391592102205.pdf

Here we investigate the size and morphology of the gastral basket in
non-neornithine strata birds and their close dinosaur non-avian
relatives. The size of the gastral basket reportedly increases with
body size in the theropoda. However, contra basal birds appear earlier
reports to have proportionately large gastral baskets compared to
non-avian theropods, suggesting gastralia may have functioned as a
compensatory feature for muscle attachment in the absence of a
craniocaudally extensive sternum. As in crocodilians, the proximal row
of gastralia in basal birds articulates with the sternum when present
suggesting the two features may have functioned as a unit;. this
hypothesis is not supported by any scars to indicate the gastralia
served as points of muscle attachment alternatively, the large size of
the gastral basket may be related to its respiratory function and the
high oxygen demands of powered flight in birds. Due to incomplete
preservation of these delicate elements as a unit, sample size is too
low to draw significant results from statistical analysis of this
element.