0867: "Herpetology"

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TheStormRanger
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0867: "Herpetology"

Postby TheStormRanger » Wed Mar 02, 2011 5:10 am UTC

Image

Alt-text: Birds are Aves, which is part of the clade Theropoda, which is in Saurischia, which is in Dinosauria. Those birds outside our windows are dinosaurs. We can clear out the rest of our brains because we now have the best fact.

So raptors are related to raptors? We are no longer safe from the sky...
:shock:

Which is something that Gary Larson has known for a while...

Image

hyperion2010
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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby hyperion2010 » Wed Mar 02, 2011 5:17 am UTC

A friend said this to me today.

"There's a bald eagle who's got a nest in one of the trees near the law school. So I live in horror of the possibility that it will think I am a delicious mouse and swoop down upon me."

Yes, raptors are still dangerous, don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

aldld
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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby aldld » Wed Mar 02, 2011 5:22 am UTC

Who else thought herpetology had something to do with herpes?

On a side note, I bet derpetology would be an awesome field!

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MikeStern
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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby MikeStern » Wed Mar 02, 2011 5:27 am UTC

I really liked this one, as opposed to some of the past ones. This was simple and genuinely funny. The alt-text is pretty good too, can't wait till the next time I see a bird so I can go "Watch out for that dinosaur!"

pigslookfunny
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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby pigslookfunny » Wed Mar 02, 2011 5:28 am UTC

aldld wrote:Who else thought herpetology had something to do with herpes?

On a side note, I bet derpetology would be an awesome field!


I was expecting a herpes joke tbh.

Arathald
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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby Arathald » Wed Mar 02, 2011 5:31 am UTC

aldld wrote:Who else thought herpetology had something to do with herpes?

On a side note, I bet derpetology would be an awesome field!


If you look at the wikipedia article on herpetology, it refers to collective reptiles and amphibians as "herps", and to gathering specimens as "herping".

My favorite is on the "Herping" page, some of the headings, including "Herp Photography", "Herping Safety" (which explains that "Herping can potentially be a dangerous activity if not pursued with proper caution." -- I almost fell out of my chair), as well as "Herping on Television", and "Herping on the Internet". This is quickly becoming one of my favorite puns.

Edit: And yes, I joined just to share this. Though I could have sworn I already had an account.... *shurg*
Last edited by Arathald on Wed Mar 02, 2011 5:41 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby iChef » Wed Mar 02, 2011 5:34 am UTC

Wasn't there supposed to be a genetics experiment going on years ago that would turn chickens into tiny little T-rexes? I am very disapointed I can not yet walk a mini T-rex down the street on the end of a leash. Science - It needs to work harder bitches!
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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby wackojacko1138 » Wed Mar 02, 2011 5:45 am UTC

Reptiles are paraphyletic anyway. All reptile means is "it's not a bird, and it's not a mammal, and it's an amniote." Ornithology should be absorbed into herpetology, and batrachology should be split off on its own.

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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby aaronasterling » Wed Mar 02, 2011 5:47 am UTC

There's sort of a science fail here which makes me sad :(

Lizards are squamates. Why single out lizards for inclusion in ornithology when birds and the crocodilians are both archosaurs? He's making ornithology polyphyletic and making herpetology even more paraphyletic than it already is.

For shame for shame.

Did you know that if we think monophyletically, you're a monkey? That's cooler than a bird being a dinosaur. Knowing that a bird is a dinosaur doesn't give you an excuse to shit in your hand and throw it at people.
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ericpaulkatz
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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby ericpaulkatz » Wed Mar 02, 2011 6:39 am UTC

Well, it's true that he should have said "reptiles" again, rather than "lizards," but I think it's absolutely fantastic that anybody who isn't a full-time biologist would draw a cladogram in a comic, and totally get the basic idea of phylogenetic systematics. :shock: I'll assume that he didn't want to repeat the word "reptile" too many times, and grant him poetic license.

An equally great inaccuracy is that he has the attitudes of the two fields reversed: in my experience, it is the herpetologists who are aware of their paraphyly and the ornithologists who would prefer to keep themselves separate. At very least, I have seen just as much anti-cladism on both sides.

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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby Ailina » Wed Mar 02, 2011 6:48 am UTC

iChef wrote:Wasn't there supposed to be a genetics experiment going on years ago that would turn chickens into tiny little T-rexes? I am very disapointed I can not yet walk a mini T-rex down the street on the end of a leash. Science - It needs to work harder bitches!


Close, but not quite.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/18/science/18obdino.html

"Researchers have discovered a small but ferocious dinosaur that lived 230 million years ago, just as dinosaurs were beginning to emerge."

"Named Eodromaeus, the creature was about four feet long and weighed 10 to 14 pounds, according to a study published in the journal Science. "

"“It was very cute; you’d want it as a pet,” said Paul Sereno, a paleontologist at the University of Chicago and one of the study’s authors. “But it might be best as a guard dinosaur, to keep the dogs away.” That’s because the little dinosaur was also a fleet-footed meat eater, with an agile body and long canines that were ideal for digging into prey. "

"Based on its anatomy, Dr. Sereno and his colleagues believe it was an early ancestor of other theropod dinosaurs, a group that includes Tyrannosaurus rex. "


So yeah, it wasn't that they were trying to create it, but that they discovered that this thing actually existed!

That being said, this lil guy would be the best pet ever. My very own mini-rex guard dinosaur. My life would be complete.

I would name him Fluffy, just to confuse people.

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Plasma Mongoose
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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby Plasma Mongoose » Wed Mar 02, 2011 7:08 am UTC

This subject is for the birds!

(There, I said it)
A virus walks into a bar, the bartender says "We don't serve viruses in here".
The virus replaces the bartender and says "Now we do!"

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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby Mortomes » Wed Mar 02, 2011 7:09 am UTC

Birds are Aves, which is part of the clade Theropoda, which is in Saurischia, which is in Dinosauria. Those birds outside our windows are dinosaurs. We can clear out the rest of our brains because we now have the best fact.


But they were all created by God on the 23rd of october 4004 BC mirite?

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KShrike
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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby KShrike » Wed Mar 02, 2011 7:32 am UTC

Mortomes wrote:
Birds are Aves, which is part of the clade Theropoda, which is in Saurischia, which is in Dinosauria. Those birds outside our windows are dinosaurs. We can clear out the rest of our brains because we now have the best fact.


But they were all created by God on the 23rd of october 4004 BC mirite?


You being sarcastic? Or do you actually share my belief in biblical theism?

@comic
.....biology....... he hasn't done one on biology in a while. In fact, I can't even recall when the last time he did one relating to biology.

I like the binary world better. Lets get back to that!
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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby omgryebread » Wed Mar 02, 2011 7:39 am UTC

Ichthyologists got all y'all, since cladistically, we're all bony fish.

Comic was funny enough, but bleh at trying to divide fields cladistically. Studying chimps is a lot more similiar to studying gorillas than it is to anthropology, despite chimps and bonobos being in Hominini and Gorillas in Gorillini.

That post was half an excuse to shout out to ichthyologists, and half an excuse to type "Hominini" and "Gorillini" since they sound kinda like names of pastas and that makes me giggle.
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slaxor
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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby slaxor » Wed Mar 02, 2011 8:05 am UTC

lol, more XKCDickery. It is, in fact the herpetologists who are assholes.

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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby Coffee » Wed Mar 02, 2011 8:10 am UTC

KShrike wrote:
Mortomes wrote:
Birds are Aves, which is part of the clade Theropoda, which is in Saurischia, which is in Dinosauria. Those birds outside our windows are dinosaurs. We can clear out the rest of our brains because we now have the best fact.


But they were all created by God on the 23rd of october 4004 BC mirite?


You being sarcastic? Or do you actually share my belief in biblical theism?

@comic
.....biology....... he hasn't done one on biology in a while. In fact, I can't even recall when the last time he did one relating to biology.

I like the binary world better. Lets get back to that!

I think this was the last biology related one. http://xkcd.com/520/
And as a biology major I should like to see more of them. To hell with binary. :)
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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby Alzhaid » Wed Mar 02, 2011 8:15 am UTC

KShrike wrote:
Mortomes wrote:
Birds are Aves, which is part of the clade Theropoda, which is in Saurischia, which is in Dinosauria. Those birds outside our windows are dinosaurs. We can clear out the rest of our brains because we now have the best fact.

But they were all created by God on the 23rd of october 4004 BC mirite?

You being sarcastic? Or do you actually share my belief in biblical theism?


I think he/she was being sarcastic, after all we all know God created them on the 14th of August 4004BC. It wasn't called August at that time, but hey, God's almighty.

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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby topquark » Wed Mar 02, 2011 8:53 am UTC

I have learnt something today. Thanks Randall!

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StClair
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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby StClair » Wed Mar 02, 2011 9:10 am UTC

Birds are absolutely dinosaurs - it's just that most of them are tiny enough, compared to us, that we don't think of them "that way." Change the relative scale, and you get scenes like the end of A Bug's Life, where a cute finch substitutes quite adequately (and horrifically, especially in a Pixar movie!) for the "T-REX OUT OF NOWHERE" denoument of the first Jurassic Park.

I think he/she was being sarcastic, after all we all know God created them on the 14th of August 4004BC. It wasn't called August at that time, but hey, God's almighty.

You're both right; it's that darn Julian-to-Gregorian switch messing things up again.

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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby mino » Wed Mar 02, 2011 10:29 am UTC

We can clear out the rest of our brains because we now have the best fact.


Patently untrue.

Like most ordinary people, he did have a guilty pleasure: Calvin Coolidge loved having his head rubbed with Vaseline while he ate breakfast in bed.


NOW we may clear out our brains.

(http://www.supermediablog.com/news/calvin-coolidge-loved-having-his-head-rubbed-with-vaseline-while-he-ate-breakfast-in-bed/)

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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby MolBio » Wed Mar 02, 2011 11:20 am UTC

Ichthyologists got all y'all, since cladistically, we're all bony fish.

Well Fish is not a cladistic term, so you can't call us fish.
Cladistically, we are all Osteichthyes. Specifically Sarcopterygii - of which the only representatives that are still "fish" are Coelacanths and lungfish.
What is a fish anyway? a morphology term? then why aren't whales/ dolphins fish, why weren't ichthyosaurs fish?
Are fish simply Chordates that don't breath air? if so, some fully aquatic members of Amphibia should qualify.

A tuna is more closely related to us, than to any shark. If we exclude sharks (Chondrichthyes), Hagfish, Lampreys, Coelacanths, and Lungfish from "Fish", then Fish becomes Actinopterygii (which are like 95% of all "fish" by current classification).
A great white shark is more closely related to us than to hagfish...
Just because it has "fish" in its name, does not make it a "fish" (example: Starfish, Cuttlefish)

iChef wrote:
Wasn't there supposed to be a genetics experiment going on years ago that would turn chickens into tiny little T-rexes? I am very disapointed I can not yet walk a mini T-rex down the street on the end of a leash. Science - It needs to work harder bitches!


Close, but not quite.


Actually, he was closer than you.
You see, chickens still have the genes needed to grow teeth and a long tail. Birds also still have the genes to grow claws on their forelimbs (some still do, ostriches do, and some young birds have noticeable claws for climbing before they are able to fly)).
It was proposed that through gene manipulation, a "dino-chicken" could be made: A chicken with teeth, claws, and a long tail.

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=reviews-jun09

http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=5658225n&tag=contentMain;contentBody

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2009/11/12/60minutes/main5629962.shtml

Well, it's true that he should have said "reptiles" again, rather than "lizards," but I think it's absolutely fantastic that anybody who isn't a full-time biologist would draw a cladogram in a comic, and totally get the basic idea of phylogenetic systematics. I'll assume that he didn't want to repeat the word "reptile" too many times, and grant him poetic license.

An equally great inaccuracy is that he has the attitudes of the two fields reversed: in my experience, it is the herpetologists who are aware of their paraphyly and the ornithologists who would prefer to keep themselves separate. At very least, I have seen just as much anti-cladism on both sides.


Indeed, he should have said reptiles rather than lizards, but what he said was not incorrect, it was just incomplete.

What was incorrect, was the cladogram, the Bird clade should not share a node with "reptiles", it should be nested within the reptile clade (sharing a node with another reptile, depending on how complete you want the cladogram to be[hint: its a comic, you want it very simple], you could simply have it share a node with lizards, and label the node "reptiles").

The ornithologists generally do not want to discuss fossil "dinobirds", some like Fedducia and Martin are quacks that argue that birds are not dinosaurs, but a separate branch from earlier reptiles, and that its just convergent evolution that makes them look like theropods. As feathered dinosaurs became more common, they made increasingly ridiculous claims. I believe the latest is that velociraptors (or maybe the entire maniraptor clade) were flightless birds (I'm ok with this, there are some definitions that would make sense and include them), and not dinosaurs at all, and it was just convergence upon the theropod body plan (this is the ridiculous part).

Reptiles are paraphyletic anyway. All reptile means is "it's not a bird, and it's not a mammal, and it's an amniote."

Incorrect, depending upon your definition of Reptile. Scientifically speaking, the "its not a bird" part has been eliminated.
Birds are reptiles.
Likewise, the term "mammal-like reptile" is also gone from scientific circles. This has been replaced with "synapsids" or "stem/proto mammals" or "Mammaliaformes"
Dimetrodon was not a reptile.
Gorgonopsids were not reptiles either.
All extant (currently living, opposite of extinct) reptiles (birds included) do form a monophyletic clade.
There is question about the placement of Turtles. They may be diapsids that lost the two holes in their skull (likely in the same process that lead to their bone armor), or they may be the only surviving members of the Anapsida lineage.
Either way, extant reptiles (again, birds included) are still monophyletic - the only thing that differs is whether extinct Anapsids are members of Reptilia, or merely Reptiliomorpha by a crown based cladistic definition

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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby DeepBass2k5 » Wed Mar 02, 2011 11:26 am UTC

as a zoology major i had to join just to post and comment on this comic. Thank you randal for giving us "softer" science people some attention too. Taxonomic ranking is one of the things people in this field argue the most about. you'd think it would be a more concrete science but noooooo. The really interesting part is how personal people take it when the ranking systems which they propose are discredited, you'd think they would realize that these classifications are all arbitrary constructs by humans, nature does not classify organisms. It was certainly a "randal get out of my head" moment to be sure.

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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby Mokele » Wed Mar 02, 2011 12:13 pm UTC

The really funny thing is, that's the sort of thing that would *actually* happen at a herpetology conference. In order to make it more accurate, however, the speaker should have a can of beer in her hand during the talk.
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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby KShrike » Wed Mar 02, 2011 12:48 pm UTC

Coffee wrote:
KShrike wrote:.....biology....... he hasn't done one on biology in a while. In fact, I can't even recall when the last time he did one relating to biology.

I like the binary world better. Lets get back to that!

I think this was the last biology related one. http://xkcd.com/520/
And as a biology major I should like to see more of them. To hell with binary. :)


ehhh.... I like the world we are allowed to manipulate better. Besides, DNA is a closed source, so genetic engineers are breaking our bodily license agreement when they are hacking our birth.

Alzhaid wrote:
KShrike wrote:
Mortomes wrote:But they were all created by God on the 23rd of october 4004 BC mirite?

You being sarcastic? Or do you actually share my belief in biblical theism?


I think he/she was being sarcastic, after all we all know God created them on the 14th of August 4004BC. It wasn't called August at that time, but hey, God's almighty.


Haha, well can't say we don't deserve the mockery.
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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby PHDrillSergeant » Wed Mar 02, 2011 12:51 pm UTC

Birds are Aves, which is part of the clade Theropoda, which is in Saurischia, which is in Dinosauria. Those birds outside our windows are dinosaurs. We can clear out the rest of our brains because we now have the best fact.


This is not completely correct.

Birds are Aves, which are part of the clade Paraves, which is in Maniraptora, which is in Maniraptoriformes, which is in Tyrannoraptora, which is in Coelurosauria, which is in Avetheropodia, which is in Tetanurae, which is in Theropodia, which which is in Saurischia, which is in Dinosauria.

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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby Rio » Wed Mar 02, 2011 12:57 pm UTC

Mokele, I was about to ask why you thought the herpetologist was female, and then I realized that the hair isn't long enough to be a male herpetologist ;) We women herpers tend toward shorter hair, I've noticed.

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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby Guest15 » Wed Mar 02, 2011 12:57 pm UTC

KShrike wrote:
Coffee wrote:
KShrike wrote:.....biology....... he hasn't done one on biology in a while. In fact, I can't even recall when the last time he did one relating to biology.

I like the binary world better. Lets get back to that!

I think this was the last biology related one. http://xkcd.com/520/
And as a biology major I should like to see more of them. To hell with binary. :)


ehhh.... I like the world we are allowed to manipulate better. Besides, DNA is a closed source, so genetic engineers are breaking our bodily license agreement when they are hacking our birth.


Next time you think we don't manipulate biology, take a good look at a chihuahua. Or better yet, a banana.

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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby Rio » Wed Mar 02, 2011 12:58 pm UTC

slaxor wrote:lol, more XKCDickery. It is, in fact the herpetologists who are assholes.

But we have a LOT more fun. And better parties.

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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby shashwat986 » Wed Mar 02, 2011 1:37 pm UTC

Wait... so my raptor fences won't work?
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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby huangho » Wed Mar 02, 2011 2:07 pm UTC

KShrike wrote:Besides, DNA is a closed source, so genetic engineers are breaking our bodily license agreement when they are hacking our birth.

Looks like DNA was developed incrementally directly in machine code; there is no source code at all. Besides, the fact that source code is not distributed does not imply a specific licensing. The legal status of reverse engineering varies from country to country anyway...

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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby squig » Wed Mar 02, 2011 2:14 pm UTC

When you herp you derp.

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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby Dave C » Wed Mar 02, 2011 2:37 pm UTC

Chordata is for pussies. Arthropods is where it's at!

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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby jc » Wed Mar 02, 2011 2:41 pm UTC

MolBio wrote:
Ichthyologists got all y'all, since cladistically, we're all bony fish.

Well Fish is not a cladistic term, so you can't call us fish. Cladistically, we are all Osteichthyes. Specifically Sarcopterygii - of which the only representatives that are still "fish" are Coelacanths and lungfish. What is a fish anyway? a morphology term? then why aren't whales/ dolphins fish, why weren't ichthyosaurs fish? Are fish simply Chordates that don't breath air? if so, some fully aquatic members of Amphibia should qualify. A tuna is more closely related to us, than to any shark. If we exclude sharks (Chondrichthyes), Hagfish, Lampreys, Coelacanths, and Lungfish from "Fish", ...


A useful way to explain it to non-scientists: It's true that "fish" isn't a real technical term, so its best meaning would be a clade that includes the critters that most people would call fish. This clearly includes trouts, salmon, tuna, etc., plus sharks, ceolacanths, lungfish, and probably hagfish, but not things like starfish or crayfish. The fun thing with this is that, by that definition, we humans are "fish", as are all mammals including seals and whales. We're a branch of the "fish" part of the tree whose ancestors learned to breathe air and left the water, and then some of us (the seals and whales) returned to the water but kept breathing air. That branch also includes the dinosaurs, of course, which we now know includes the birds. If "fish" has any actual meaning, it includes all those critters (except starfish and crayfish), including us. If your definition of "fish" includes sharks and tunas, but not humans or dolphins, then your definition is biologically meaningless.

One thing about the comic's diagram is that the branch that includes reptiles and birds is sorta shaky, and it's still reasonable to be skeptical of this. The old "further research is needed" mantra applies, and until that branch is firmed up a bit, it might be better to continue to view the reptile/dinosaur/mammal divergence as an unresolved 3-way split. It almost certainly was two 2-way splits, and there's some evidence that the mammals branched off first, but we really should get some more evidence before declaring this official doctrine.

OTOH, the reclassification of birds as dinosaurs is now on quite firm ground, and the few remaining skeptics are pretty much considered nut cases (or scientists with a sense of humor who enjoy playing the skeptic even when they know they're gonna lose).

The splits that produced the modern amphibia and crocodilia are also still pretty fuzzy, so those are good areas for playing the skeptic when people claim that the tree is known in detail.

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Shoe Event Horizon

Postby darrenw251 » Wed Mar 02, 2011 2:45 pm UTC

The dinosaurs mutated into birds because of low-quality shoes. :wink:

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Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby Tiercelet » Wed Mar 02, 2011 3:02 pm UTC

A useful way to explain it to non-scientists

It seems we're more in need of a way to explain it to scientists. The non-scientists aren't the ones having trouble with English!

The problem with cladistics (and Linnaean classifications too) is that it's an attempt to create a rigorous (completely internally consistent) categorization system, carried out by amateurs in the relevant field (cognitive neuroscience and cog. linguistics). Problems in biological categorization are fairly typical of human category systems generally. Y'see, human brains actually create categories not by necessary/sufficient conditions forming in-or-out rules, but as radial structures branching off of more and less paradigmatic examples.

Example: "Mother." Central case: your dad's wife, who gave birth to you. But what about less central cases? Your dad's new wife? (Does it matter whether your birth mother is still alive?) The surrogate who bore you, after embryonic-you was implanted in her from the genetic material of the parents who have cared for you? What if the surrogate, the caring parent, and the egg donor were all different people? Is a woman a mother who had a child that died in infancy, and is now childless? What if the child was stillborn? Is an egg donor a mother? What about a nulliparous woman who married a widower with children, but has subsequently divorced him (or the children subsequently died) -- was she ever a mother, and if so, is she still one? You'll feel a need to come up with a clear set of rules to make consistent judgments on all these cases, but that's not actually relevant. Legitimate disagreement with the rules you established would be possible, because that's how human minds conceive of categories -- better and worse examples which are related to a central case everyone agrees on.

It is folly to expect us to be better at sorting fossils than at identifying our parents.

maastrictian
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Mar 02, 2011 2:54 pm UTC

Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby maastrictian » Wed Mar 02, 2011 3:09 pm UTC

I created an account to grouse over the use of the term "reptile", so I'm glad to see that others got there first :) In any case, I fixed the diagram on the left side of the comic.

http://gloria-mundi.net/herpetologyFixed.png

As MolBio points out, there is some doubt about the placement of Turtles, so they could be included with lizards and snakes rather than placed where I've put them or they could branch off from the tree after mammals rather than before. I went for the version with more pretty lines.

(Ornithologists may be assholes, but paleontologists are pedants)

suzi
Posts: 79
Joined: Thu Mar 29, 2007 12:04 am UTC

Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby suzi » Wed Mar 02, 2011 3:21 pm UTC

I'm surprised at how many people don't seem to know about the birds-are-dinosaurs thing, but I guess I am a bird freak. Anyone who owns a parrot surely can give anecdotal evidence backing up the lineage.

It's really interesting to see how over the past 20 years, more and more children's dinosaur books are being written to include feathered dinosaurs, and more and more bird books are including the dinosaur bit. When I was a kid it was far from mainstream, and now it's more accepted as fact. Though if you dig into the academia on it it's still full of controversy and arguments.

The Bird by Colin Tudge has an excellent section dedicated to the taxonomy of the bird, for anyone curious.

justintime89
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Mar 02, 2011 4:13 pm UTC

Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby justintime89 » Wed Mar 02, 2011 4:15 pm UTC

As a paleontologist I found this comic to be hilarious, especially considering that I was able to say the names of most birds before I said the words "mommy" or "daddy".

zmatt
Posts: 554
Joined: Mon Feb 07, 2011 3:48 pm UTC

Re: 0867: "Herpetology"

Postby zmatt » Wed Mar 02, 2011 4:54 pm UTC

suzi wrote:I'm surprised at how many people don't seem to know about the birds-are-dinosaurs thing, but I guess I am a bird freak. Anyone who owns a parrot surely can give anecdotal evidence backing up the lineage.

It's really interesting to see how over the past 20 years, more and more children's dinosaur books are being written to include feathered dinosaurs, and more and more bird books are including the dinosaur bit. When I was a kid it was far from mainstream, and now it's more accepted as fact. Though if you dig into the academia on it it's still full of controversy and arguments.

The Bird by Colin Tudge has an excellent section dedicated to the taxonomy of the bird, for anyone curious.


I've known about birds being dinosaurs for some time now. I've also known that for the most part sharks and alligators/crocs have made it to the modern day more or less the way they were pre KT. That's what I get for filling my youth with the Discovery channel, you know, back when it was actually educational.
clockworkmonk wrote:Except for Warren G. Harding. Fuck that guy.


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