[Taxacom] Lufengpithecus juvenile

John Grehan calabar.john at gmail.com
Mon Nov 5 19:28:19 CST 2012

I had time to look the paper over that Ken had alerted me to. It does not
seem to be very useful at this juncture. The paper does not appear to
demonstrate that the juvenile is a Lufengpithecus. The fossil also has
incisive foramina with anterior channels quite unlike any other ape. The
morphometrics does not seem to make much sense either, even if one took the
view that it was not necessary to have an outgroup to define derived
states, the similarity identified for the fossil and Pan might be fine if
it were not for the fact that the same data places some orangutans more
closely with some chimps. The paper does not seem to produce anything like
what one would expect for some substantative systematics as one would think
would be the norm these days. But then, most on this list think morphology
is unreliable anyway and so fossils cannot be identified with any
reliability anyway and perhaps this is why 'no one' (or at least the
journal editors) cares whether there is any good systematic data or not.
And its a pity that the comparison was made between the fossil ape and
extant apes and not with other fossil juveniles such as the australopiths
(although perhaps they were not similarly aged).

John Grehan

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