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Xiaotingia by Qilong Xiaotingia by Qilong
Xiaotingia zhengi is surprisingly large, larger than all specimens of Archaeopteryx, to which it appears to be closely related. Notable features include the broadly-spaced teeth, a deep maxilla, a robust third metacarpal, and very, very short anterior caudals.
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:iconskyvalr:
skyvalr Featured By Owner Apr 28, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Can I use this as a reference for a model I'm working on?
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:iconqilong:
Qilong Featured By Owner Apr 28, 2013
Yes. Skeletals are free for use, requiring only Attribution. Says so on the side-bar.
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:iconskyvalr:
skyvalr Featured By Owner Apr 28, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thanks, I didn't see.
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:iconqilong:
Qilong Featured By Owner Apr 28, 2013
That was not meant to rude; I apologize. Just look to the side to see the CC tag: All of my skeletals have a different one than any other illustration, so as to be available for use.
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:iconqilong:
Qilong Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2011
Thanks for all the comments, guys. I spent more time than I usually do, because it was composed with virtually all parts separated from one another: Each phalanx is on a separate layer, and the far leg was copied and pasted from the right in order to put it into correct position, and then I added the body outline on a few other layers. It's not perfect: The calf of the near leg is a bit distorted, and will eventually be fixed, and the caudal vertebrae are a little too large. But, I can open the mouth if I wanted to!
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:iconfatcaiman:
FatCaiman Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2011  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
It looks fantastic though, and I really like the pose. :D

Also, great reply on phylogenetics as well as the structure of hadrosaur musculature/ ligaments. =)
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:iconqilong:
Qilong Featured By Owner Aug 19, 2011
I hope to update and adjust my poses in the future to be more dynamic and less "Paulian."
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:iconbabbletrish:
babbletrish Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2011  Professional Traditional Artist
Fantastic!
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:iconemperordinobot:
EmperorDinobot Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2011
More bird than dinosaur?
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:iconqilong:
Qilong Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2011
There's a difference? It's like saying: More T. rex than dinosaur!
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:iconemperordinobot:
EmperorDinobot Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2011
To better rephrase: Is it closer to Compsognathus than to Archaeopteryx?
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:iconqilong:
Qilong Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2011
That's not really a better way to ask the question: It could be one step removed from Archaeopteryx lithographica in a cladogram, but not actually be closer to X than Y, where X is Archaeopteryx lithographica. There's a difference between phyletic distance (how many steps removed, or nodes on the cladogram from, a taxon is from two points) and phylogenetic closeness, which depends on which stem you are on. In the latest analysis, Archaeopteryx lithographica is closer to Deinonychus antirrhopus than to birds; this makes it a member of the group we would call (Deinonychus antirrhopus [not] "all living birds") (it doesn't actually have a name, the closest equivalent so far is Deinonychosauria, which contains Troodon formosus and Dromaeosaurus albertensis, and their most recent common ancestor). Xiaotingia zhengi is within this group, because it is positioned close to Archaeopteryx lithographica, and they are collectively on the stem that opposes (is not included on) Avialae, which is explicitly ("all living birds" [not] Deinonychus antirrhopus). This means in both phyletic distance and phylogenetic closeness, Xiaotingia zhengi is closer to Archie than to birds, and Archie is closer to dromaeosaurs and troodontids than to birds; dromies and troodontids are themselves closer to birds than to Compsognathus longipes, but that's not saying much: so is Tyrannosaurus rex in most analyses, among oviraptorosaurs, ornithomimosaurs, alvarezsaurs, therizinosauroids, etc.
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:iconspongebobfossilpants:
SpongeBobFossilPants Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2012
"which contains Troodon formosus and Dromaeosaurus albertensis, and their most recent common ancestor"

Couldn't archaeopterygids still be deinonychosaurs in that sense (that is, if archies themselves were ancestral to both Dromaeosauridae & Troodontidae)?
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:iconqilong:
Qilong Featured By Owner Feb 29, 2012
As long as they were not also ancestors to birds, yes. This requires them to be in a monophyletic (not excluding a descendant, and not including an animal with a different ancestor). If, however, Archie was ancestral to other birds, was a bird itself, or was a side line that did not involve dromaeosaurids OR troodontids, then it could not be a deinonychosaur. Archie would have to be closer to either troodontids or dromaeosaurids, where troodontids and dromaeosaurids are closer to each other than to birds, in order to be a deinonychosaurs. That is, (Troodon (Archie + Dromaeosaurus)) or (Dromaeosaurus (Archie + Troodon)); never (Archie (Troodon + Dromaeosaurus)), regardless of where birds go.
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:iconspongebobfossilpants:
SpongeBobFossilPants Featured By Owner Feb 29, 2012
Wait, wouldn't the ancestral deinonychosaur have been equally close to both groups?
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:iconqilong:
Qilong Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2012
Yes, but it wouldn't have been a deinonychosaur. The name Deinonychosauria is -- currently -- defined to be based on the descendants only of the last common ancestor of Dromaeosaurus albertensis and Troodon formosus, meaning it is largely restricted to "dromaeosaurids" and "troodontids" in the broader sense. That was the intention of the name, at any rate, to collect together dromaeosaurids and troodontids due to shared features of the pes that seem to be preserved in many of these basic birdy animals, too. So far, phylogenetic analysis of these animals has consistently recovered them as sister-taxa. This means that only the animals that are on the stems toward each actual animal -- Dromaeosaurus albertensis and Troodon formosus -- can be deinonychosaurs. Animals may be closer to them than to any other animal, and not a member of either subgroup, but if this is the case, then they are not deinonychosaurs in that sense or by the definition of the name.

So far, no consistent analysis has supported Archaeopteryx lithographica in the position the Xiaotingia paper suggests, although it is quite new. Even when analyses do support it, they are limited and overturned by those with more data, and thus are better supported. Archaeopteryx lithographica would have to be either a dromaeosaurid or a troodontid to be a deinonychosaur; although it can still be closer to the group that contains both of them and not birds, just that that group cannot be "deinonychosaurs."
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(1 Reply)
:iconemperordinobot:
EmperorDinobot Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2011
Still answered my question :icontrollfaceplz:
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:iconqilong:
Qilong Featured By Owner Aug 7, 2011
You shouldn't be proud of yourself when I could have just supplemented the answer in some blog post or whatever. Saying "yes" or "no" is just inefficient. I gave you TOO MUCH!
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:iconemperordinobot:
EmperorDinobot Featured By Owner Aug 9, 2011
Thus enhancing my knowledge. This is an interesting animal. It's makes the 'missing link' thing disappear.
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:iconqilong:
Qilong Featured By Owner Aug 19, 2011
Yes, missing links simply don't exist, as they are mere artifacts of our lack of knowledge. And thank you.
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(1 Reply)
:iconfingertier:
Fingertier Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2011
I like it!
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:iconalgoroth:
Algoroth Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2011  Professional General Artist
Great pose, excellent drawing! And it don't look like a GSP pose, which is a plus. :chew:
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:iconqilong:
Qilong Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2011
Yes, escaping the pose constraint!
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:iconalgoroth:
Algoroth Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2011  Professional General Artist
What do you think of Greg Paul's hadrosaur reconstructions and restorations, with that straight across the back of the neck to head form? They look kind of....off....to me. Do you know of a modern animal built like that?
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:iconqilong:
Qilong Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2011
The reconstruction is based on unpublished mummies which supposedly preserved this integument. This has since been shown to be incorrect, but the secondary reasoning used by Paul was that there was a "mammal-style" nuchal ligament (ligamentum nuchalis) that spanned the rear of the skull to the anterior dorsals. The complexity of this ligament is understated, and likely very, very different from what anyone, including Paul, restore it as. For one, it is not just one ligament, and it is bound is many branches to every single vertebra between the origin and the insertion. It is also based, as in birds, on a system of muscles that have "ligamentized" rather than just the basal ligament fibres before the appearance of muscle fibres in the system. The system is birds is very complex, and forms an array that spans the neck like an inverted truss, and keep the neck in small birds in a permanent U-shape, while in larger birds it follows the vertebral curve of the neck and is strongly associated with large ligament scars or knobs. We see this in sauropods, for example, and it implies the nuchal system was much more closely associated with the vertebral curve than apart from it, while in hadrosaurs, this is less clear.
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:iconalgoroth:
Algoroth Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2011  Professional General Artist
Thanks for the info! I have seen a pic of what seems to be a corythosaur mummy that SEEMS to show the body outline. Could be wrong in what I think I see, and it shows a rather horse-like configuration, which would make sense to me.

Even bison don't have the configuration Paul shows, and their tall spine thingees are closer to the neck than in hadrosaurs. That does not prove anything, but Paul's configuration seems to me to heavily constrict a hadrosaurian's ability to move both neck and body. Usually, in nature, animals in the wild don't seem to be built to not be able to move to the best of their ability, sloths included, but of course, not including sessile animals like barnacles. In other words, most any depiction of an animal (endoskeletal) that looks like it can't move right...is wrong.
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:iconmiyess:
Miyess Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2011   Digital Artist
Good job on the pose... very dynamic! :)
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