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Re: Robust-Necked Azhdarchid Pterosaur from the Maastrichtian of Romania

Here's the free pdf link:


On Tue, Mar 17, 2015 at 2:46 PM, Ben Creisler <bcreisler@gmail.com> wrote:
> Ben Creisler
> bcreisler@gmail.com
> A new paper (free pdf link is not yet posted on American Museum site):
> Mátyás Vremir, Mark Witton, Darren Naish, Gareth Dyke, Stephen L.
> Brusatte, Mark Norell, and Radu Totoianu (2015)
> A Medium-Sized Robust-Necked Azhdarchid Pterosaur (Pterodactyloidea:
> Azhdarchidae) from the Maastrichtian of Pui (Hateg Basin,
> Transylvania, Romania).
> American Museum Novitates  3827: 1-16
> doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1206/3827.1
> http://www.bioone.org/doi/abs/10.1206/3827.1
> AMNH link:
> http://digitallibrary.amnh.org/dspace/handle/2246/9
> We describe a pterosaurian cervical vertebra collected from
> Maastrichtian sediments at the Pui locality in the Haţeg Basin,
> Romania. This specimen, a medium-sized, robust fourth cervical, is
> distinctive in morphology and represents a new, as yet unrecognized,
> azhdarchid pterosaur size class within the Hateg Island fauna: it most
> likely belongs to a new taxon which we opt not to name here. The
> vertebra is referred to Azhdarchidae based on clearly preserved
> diagnostic features characteristic of this group and differs in
> proportions and anatomical details from the recently named azhdarchid
> Eurazhdarcho langendorfensis Vremir et al., 2013a, from the Sebeş
> region of the Transylvanian basin. We take issue with claims that all
> Maastrichtian Romanian azhdarchids (and other penecontemporaneous
> azhdarchids and azhdarchoids) should be uncritically assumed to be
> synonymous: it ignores anatomical characters that allow the specimens
> concerned to be differentiated and is based on an erroneous "one
> stratum, one species" philosophy contradicted by empirical data from
> other azhdarchoid assemblages. It has been suggested that the absence
> of small to medium-sized pterosaurs in Upper Cretaceous sediments is
> indicative of an evolutionary trend. However, evidence from the Haţeg
> Island fauna may indicate instead that smaller-sized pterosaurs were
> indeed present in this interval but remain underrepresented due to
> rare preservation and collection.