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Re: [dinosaur] Chilesaurus may be early ornithischian "missing link," not a plant-eating theropod (free pdf)





The paper is now free at the link:

Matthew G. Baron and Paul M. Barrett (2017)
A dinosaur missing-link? Chilesaurus and the early evolution of ornithischian dinosaurs.
Biology Letters 2017 13 20170220
DOI: 10.1098/rsbl.2017.0220
http://rsbl.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/13/8/20170220


Free pdf:

http://rsbl.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/roybiolett/13/8/20170220.full.pdf


On Wed, Aug 16, 2017 at 12:25 AM, Ben Creisler <bcreisler@gmail.com> wrote:
Here's the paper:



Matthew G. Baron and Paul M. Barrett (2017)
A dinosaur missing-link? Chilesaurus and the early evolution of ornithischian dinosaurs.
Biology Letters 2017 13 20170220
DOI: 10.1098/rsbl.2017.0220


The enigmatic dinosaur taxon Chilesaurus diegosuarezi was originally described as a tetanuran theropod, but this species possesses a highly unusual combination of features that could provide evidence of alternative phylogenetic positions within the clade. In order to test the relationships of Chilesaurus, we added it to a new dataset of early dinosaurs and other dinosauromorphs. Our analyses recover Chilesaurus in a novel position, as the earliest diverging member of Ornithischia, rather than a tetanuran theropod. The basal position of Chilesaurus within the clade and its suite of anatomical characters suggest that it might represent a ‘transitional’ taxon, bridging the morphological gap between Theropoda and Ornithischia, thereby offering potential insights into the earliest stages of ornithischian evolution, which were previously obscure. For example, our results suggest that pubic retroversion occurred prior to some of the craniodental and postcranial modifications that previously diagnosed the clade (e.g. the presence of a predentary bone and ossified tendons).


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