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New dinosaurs include birds Locustella chengi and Archaeornithura meemannae and dromaeosaurid Saurornitholestes sullivani.

New studies came out on the function of the alula in flight, the development of the avian snout and hallux, and the phylogeny of hesperornithines. Supposed sexual dimorphism in Protoceratops andrewsi and gregariousness in the Eubrontes trackmakers of Hartford Basin are reevaluated and found to be unconvincing. Swimming traces from stegosaurs, an unusual dromaeosaurid track morphology, and a new specimen of Allosaurus with multiple pathologies are described. The trace fossil Wupus agilis is found to belong to large birds rather than other types of theropods. Nesting site fidelity is established in multiple new troodont nest specimens.

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:iconspongebobfossilpants:
SpongeBobFossilPants Featured By Owner 7 hours ago
Has anyone complained in the technical literature about bad clade definitions? Some of the ones in the notes you sent me are terrible (there's a >50% chance I'm a carnivoramorph).
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:iconalbertonykus:
Albertonykus Featured By Owner 5 hours ago
Not that I'm aware of, but I'm not sufficiently aware of the mammal literature. It does appear to be a recurring theme that mammal clades are named with topologies in mind rather than actual definitions.
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:icondracontes:
dracontes Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you very much for the favs, Alb :)
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:iconalbertonykus:
Albertonykus Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2015
No problem!
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:iconplioart:
Plioart Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks for the +fav!
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:iconalbertonykus:
Albertonykus Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2015
No problem!
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:iconspongebobfossilpants:
Do you have any good overviews of Romer's old reptile classification? I'd like one in case I want to use it for one of my April Fools posts.
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:iconalbertonykus:
Albertonykus Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2015
Short of finding a copy of his textbook, there's Wikipedia's overview. Osborn (1903) laid the foundation for his reptile taxonomy and could be worth checking out as well.
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:iconspongebobfossilpants:
How valid are Olson's criticisms of Cracraft's 1981 paper? Both papers are obviously quite old, and Cracraft himself shot down most of the major ones, but are any of Olson's statements valid? I consider myself a cladist, but I don't know enough to evaluate every single one.
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:iconalbertonykus:
Albertonykus Featured By Owner Jun 17, 2015
It would take a lot of research and time that I do not have to unpack all the arguments about the validity of proposed synapomorphies (which have been rendered mostly obsolete by our new understanding of avian phylogeny anyhow), so I won't go down that rabbit hole. Olson is correct in that ranks do not work well with a classification based on the tree of life, which is exactly why they are no longer used in phylogenetic taxonomy. He also has a point in that Cracraft's scheme is not based on an actual phylogenetic analysis. That said, it's evident that Cracraft intended his classification as more of a hypothetical to encourage other ornithologists to start doing detailed investigations with a phylogenetic mindset.
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