[Taxacom] new phylogeny of early birds/coelurosaurs

Ken Kinman kinman at hotmail.com
Sun May 20 17:19:38 CDT 2007

Dear All,
      Phil Senter has published a new, expansive phylogenetic analysis of 
primitive birds and other coelurosaurs.  Although I have only seen the 
abstract, I am particularly happy to see that his phylogeny does NOT show an 
"enigmosaur" clade, and that therizinosaurs are more primitive than 
oviraptorosaurs.  Maybe the some of the guys on the Dinosaur Mailing List 
will finally see why I argued so strenuously against an enigmosaur clade.  
Senter's phylogeny also agrees with mine in that therizinosaurs (a.k.a. 
segnosaurs) are the sister group to the clade which I call Class AVES.  It 
will be very, very interesting to see what characters in his analysis 
support my broad Class AVES.  The abstract is given below.
         Ken Kinman

Senter, P. (2007).  A new look at the phylogeny of Coelurosauria 
(Dinosauria: Theropoda). Journal of Systematic Palaeontology.

Abstract: "The most comprehensive phylogenetic analysis of the theropod 
clade Coelurosauria to date, is presented here, with 85 coelurosaurian 
ingroups and 360 characters, using _Allosaurus_ and _Sinraptor_ as 
outgroups. The strict consensus tree is highly resolved and has the 
following topology: Tyrannosauroidea + (Compsognathidae + (Arctometatarsalia 
+ (_Ornitholestes_ + (Therizinosauroidea + (Alvarezsauridae + 
(Oviraptorosauria + (Avialae + (Troodontidae + Dromaeosauridae)))))))). The 
analysis places _Coelurus_ and _Tanycolagreus_ at the base of 
Tyrannosauroidea, _Deinocheirus_ within Arctometatarsalia, 
_Protarchaeopteryx_ within Oviraptorosauria and _Epidendrosaurus_ at the 
base of Avialae. The analysis results in wide phylogenetic separation 
between _Caenagnathus_ (close to the base of Oviraptorosauria) and 
_Chirostenotes_ (placed within a clade of crested oviraptorids), casting 
doubt on their synonymy. All taxa with an enlarged, trenchant ungual on the 
second toe are placed within Troodontidae or Dromaeosauridae; at the base of 
the latter is an unenlagiine clade that includes _Unenlagia_ and 
_Rahonavis_. The hypothesis that dromaeosaurids are secondarily flightless 
birds is not supported."

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