Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Dinosaurs/Archive 18

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Citizendium dinosaur articles

Has anyone here checked out Citizendium's paleo articles? They don't have any dinosaur articles per se yet, but the one article that mentions them, Extinction (geology) contains the rather odd statement that Edmontosaurus became extinct because they couldn't find enough conifers to eat! This despite conifers being plentiful today. The source cited does not even contain the word "conifer".

There are serious problems with this article, but it's a "live" article, meaning it has been approved by some official on Citizendium. Citizendium is supposed to be an expert-written wiki, but it's clear even basic science nomenclature isn't being followed (generic names not in italics, spelling errors like "Mesazoic", etc).

Should we be alerting them of these errors, or contacting someone? I realize this isn't Citizendium, but that source is a wiki, and there may be backlash against all wiki-based encyclopedias with this sort of dubious material floating around. Firsfron of Ronchester 03:10, 20 August 2007 (UTC)

The main editor has no specific credentials for geology. Maybe alert the recent editor Jasper Wubs, who is a BSc and has interest in evolutionary biology, and the Biology Workgroup. How to do that? A quick poke around doesn't reveal any obvious way for non-editors to contact editors, which is a deep problem to me. Circeus 03:27, 20 August 2007 (UTC)
I would be more concerned if anyone actually, you know, used Citizendium. But if there is a way to contact someone, that would be cool. Sheep81 05:22, 20 August 2007 (UTC)
Just cause they say they're experts doesn't mean they are. I mean, I always thought a BSc was someone who talked a load of Bull S**t. ;) Spawn Man 05:26, 20 August 2007 (UTC)
Hey, some of us resemble that remark! Not that it's always untrue... ;) Dinoguy2 08:46, 20 August 2007 (UTC)
It's certainly true for me! Sheep81 09:21, 20 August 2007 (UTC)
And so? I pushed a plant featured article without any credentials in biology whatsoever Face-wink.svg Circeus 21:00, 20 August 2007 (UTC)
Thanks for your comments, all. Circeus, I did eventually find a "contact" link, which led to a citizendium forum. Of course, one must register on the forum before being able to post anything. I haven't received my confirmation e-mail yet (the one you get where you click to verify that you're really a human being or whatever). This is a rather long process just to report an error. :/ Firsfron of Ronchester 00:49, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
the one you get where you click to verify that you're really a human being or whatever
That's if you're lucky. I've run intosomany forums that never sent any mails that I don't bother with'em anymore. Circeus 01:17, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
That's exactly what ended up happening, Circeus. I never received the confirmation e-mail. I went ahead just now and sent an e-mail to Larry Sanger, the head of CZ (and the only official with his e-mail address listed on the contact page!). I'd like to see their project be successful, but more importantly, I don't their mistakes to reflect poorly on WP:DINO. Firsfron of Ronchester 08:16, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
Hey guys, I am a Constable at Citizendium, Matt Innis. Thanks for the heads up on the Extinction article. Just to clarify, an article that is 'CZ Live' means that it has actively been worked on at Citizendium. That could be by any author and not necessarily by an expert in the field (our editors). When it becomes approved, you will see a green template across the top that states that it has been approved and the name of the workgroup and editor that approved it. I can see the confusion with the 'Live' designation, but we are currently working on the 'under construction' type designations.
Firsfron, I am also concerned that we did not respond to your registration request, especially since this is one of MY jobs :-) Can you email me your real name so that I can find out what happened? We might have a 'crack" in our system that you slipped through! Though I suppose there is always the chance we thought you were questionable ;-) Dematt 02:09, 3 September 2007 (UTC)
Thanks Matt. I'm glad people are working on fixing the issue. I see they have already fixed the italics and spelling. However, the problematic Edmontosaurus-died-from-lack-of-conifers theory is still in the article! The source supposedly cited for that information, this page, does not mention either conifers or Edmontosaurus anywhere in the text. It's a very odd claim, and a false citation. I'm going to go ahead and cross-post this to your talk page. Firsfron of Ronchester 19:17, 3 September 2007 (UTC)
Thank *you* Firsfron, I do see that there is discussion going on concerning the conifer issue[1]. It is similar to WP, there should be some discussion before changing someone's edit. I also see that there was some reasoning behind the post, but I am not an expert, so I leave it up to you guys to get it right. My job is to make sure that everyone 'behaves' and that experts are given a bigger voice. When there are no clear experts, it evolves very similar to WP, using authors that sometimes make mistakes (but I have seen experts disagree as well!). Rest assured though, the article cannot get approved until three editors agree that it is accurate. If you do join, perhaps you can be one of those! Do keep me informed. -- Dēmatt (chat) 19:58, 3 September 2007 (UTC)


Hello. I'm a user of the German WP and currently working on Stegosaur articels. I stumbled across Dravidosaurus, which is considered a Stegosaur according to my books: Weishampel/Dodson/Osmólska: The Dinosauria, 2004 and Fastovsky/Weishampel: The Evolution and Extinction of the Dinosaurs. The English article about Dravidosaurus says according to more recent studies he is a plesiosaur; but then are only 2 sources from the 1970s and 1990s cited (except for the book from 2004, but this clearly states he is a stegosaur). Are there any younger sources which could clarify the position of Dravidosaurus? Regards -- 11:57, 20 August 2007 (UTC) (de:Benutzer:Bradypus)

It's been confirmed that the chapter of The Dinosauria (2004) on stegosaurs was written before Chatterjee's finding nothing but plesiosaurs at the site, and it wasn't fixed. J. Spencer 13:39, 20 August 2007 (UTC)
I always thought Dravi was a stegosaur? Never heard of it being a plesiosaur before... Spawn Man 03:50, 21 August 2007 (UTC)

Tanystropheus is NOT a dinosaur.

I hope Tanystropheus was removed from wikiproject dinosaurs. It is not a dinosaur. T.Neo 12:45, 20 August 2007 (UTC)

How 'bout Archeopteryx? Face-wink.svg
Which is the front-page article for the 29th. J. Spencer 00:41, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
You know, if it turns out that T rex and lots of other dromeosaurs and raptors are secondarily flightless birds, all your base belong to us. Sabine's Sunbird talk 00:23, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
'Course, where did birds come from in the first place? Bow to your dinosaur overlords! Firsfron of Ronchester 00:46, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
Birds are crocs. Alan Fedduccia said so, so it must be true! he wouldn't lie. Sabine's Sunbird talk 01:19, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
Yay! Finally after months of it being listed, Archie is gonna be featured on the main page!!! Yay! Spawn Man 03:55, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
It's always so exciting, isn't it, Spawnie? :) Well, up until one minute after it appears on the main page, when all the constant vandalism starts. I expect this one will be rougher than usual: school is back in session, so we can expect the typical schoolkid vandalism, but since it's Archie, we can expect the Creationist nutters to come out in droves, too. Firsfron of Ronchester 08:21, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, why HAVEN'T we turned Tanystropheus over to WikiProject Prolacertiformes yet? Sheep81 23:52, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
Because it's clearly under the purview of Wikipedia:WikiProject Tanystrophidae, of course. Firsfron of Ronchester 00:46, 22 August 2007 (UTC)
There's a separate WikiProject for Tanystrophidae? That's almost as ridiculous as having a separate WikiProject for birds! :) Sheep81 00:59, 22 August 2007 (UTC)

As far as I am concerned, Feduccia is a wacko. there are no birdlike organisims in the fossil record other than theropod dinosaurs. It would be absurd to think of birds being decended from crocodiles. As for archaeopteryx, I would remove it from wikiproject dinosaurs, modern classifications say it is a bird, but more of a dinosaur than tanystropheus. T.Neo 11:43, 21 August 2007 (UTC)

Oh, and another point: what about the mei long fossil that was found in a sleeping position similar to that of birds? this may be a death pose but the similarity is to great to ignore. And what about microraptor? There is evidence to suggest that it had fully formed feathers. Now feduccia and his friends have "proof" that dromeasaurs decended from crocs too. T.Neo 11:50, 21 August 2007 (UTC)

Feduccia (or at least Martin) seem to now consider all maniraptorans to be non-dinosaurian birds. Some others, like Czerkas, take a 'soft' approach, and suggest that maniraptors are dinosaurs, but not technically theropods, having evolved from a Scansoriopteryx-like proto-theropod lineage. Scansoriopterygids are so weird I wouldn't call it completely nuts, but it does seem like a modern parallel to the old segnosaur situation: a seemingly out-of-nowhere, bizarre dinosaur group is discovered with no clear lineage, and is relegated to some kind of proto-dinosaur status. Some adult or basal scansor fossils would be nice... Dinoguy2 14:39, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
Phil Senter has (I posted that some time ago) a nice analysis upcoming, and if that holds, we are more than just inching towards the resolution of the issue - "Some adult or basal scansor fossils would be nice..." very much so indeed. Me, I don't care too much. Give me anything with a good ossified and maybe keeled sternum, or whose ancestor had one, and I'm fine. Yes, that would exclude Archie, which I like to see as the closest thing to birds without actually being one, and a damn fine theropod at that. Makes things easier much with the creationists... softens them up for the barrage of Enantiornis and Gansus and Yanornis and Yixianornis and Laornis that'll follow.
And Sunbird - would that not be "all your crown and stem belong to us, and if we have a good day you might be allowed to keep the base"? Dysmorodrepanis 15:26, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
Hey bird freaks, want a free featured article? We're removing it from our Project. I [heart] paraphyly! Sheep81 23:50, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
Yay, I guess that makes it my first non-dino FA then! I really am multi-faceted... ;) Spawn Man 04:32, 22 August 2007 (UTC)
Yes, you are a true Renaissance (spawn) man. Sheep81 05:06, 22 August 2007 (UTC)

A very nice and citeable resource

You might have already come across this one. It is a great reference for anything that regards general paleontological issues. For in older (as per date of description) and little-studied taxa, you often have to make most of the information to be able to go beyond stub-class. Paleobiogeography for example is not appropriately considered in most publications before the 1960s or so, as plate tectonics was simply not widely accepted before then; ditto stratigraphy, taphonomy etc. This book is very helpful to get an idea what the current baseline in paleontology is, and in a pinch it can be cited on almost any non-specific issue. It'll help you to go from simply reading and summarizing the sources to understanding them and reading between the lines. For example, even with the new understanding of the opisthotonus, Archie's common death pose is not simply due to that - it's only the presence of considerable amounts of feathers that suggests it indeed was. Why so? See chapter 3. Dysmorodrepanis 16:04, 21 August 2007 (UTC)

Cool, looks interesting! I'll look through it when I get time. Sheep81 23:47, 21 August 2007 (UTC)

Next one for FAC then?

OK, Majungasaurus looks like it will get over the line - what next? Dropzink is working on Plateosaurus, while Herrerasaurus and Lambeosaurus are still there. Or, something out of left field..anyone?cheers, Casliber (talk · contribs) 06:30, 22 August 2007 (UTC)

Definitely not Herra yet; its paragraphs are still too stubby in some places and it is not long enough overall IMO. Also, its one external link looks weird all alone at the bottom. Lambey is a lot better, but the Classification section is a bit out of position in terms of where the sections should go - a shuffle of the subheading sections is in order. And of course Platey is not even near ready yet - the lead isn't long enough, nor are the sections or paragraphs. So if I had to choose, I'd say Lambey after a shuffle of the sections so that it flows better... Or maybe the Cretaceous tertiary extinction event which could make it if we worked on it a bit...? Spawn Man 07:09, 22 August 2007 (UTC)
Spinosaurus? - Homer: "You've been pitching that one all night." J. Spencer 14:27, 22 August 2007 (UTC)
It's a long time since I've looked at Spiny - he's looking alot healthier that's for sure....cheers, Casliber (talk · contribs) 19:36, 22 August 2007 (UTC)
Still a lot of work though... Spawn Man 11:11, 23 August 2007 (UTC)
Lambeosaurus and Spinosaurus look in the best shape to me. I'd go with one of those. Firsfron of Ronchester 12:24, 23 August 2007 (UTC)
I beg to differ - Spiny is waay off. It'll get blasted for its short paragraphs straight away. I'd have to say it'd go Lambey, Herra and then Spiney... What condition is Allosaurus in? Spawn Man 23:18, 23 August 2007 (UTC)
Barely even started; a lot of things in the air lately have been diverting attention. J. Spencer 23:52, 23 August 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, Lamby's looking pretty good to fall voer teh line next while more extensive work is done on Spiny and Herrerasaurus (can't really make a cutesy vernacular name out of that one easily..)...cheers, Casliber (talk · contribs) 00:39, 24 August 2007 (UTC)
Yes you can - Herra. Sounds like Herrer, but cutsier... ;) Spawn Man 06:18, 24 August 2007 (UTC)
I just threw in some stuff from Parasaurolophus to help fill out the paleoecology and paleobiology sections, which seemed thin and non-comprehensive. J. Spencer 00:42, 24 August 2007 (UTC)

Great - look I've had a look and reckon this Lambeosaurus is almost right to's been sitting there on the cusp for a wee while now. Can we all give it a quick look-see to see any glaring errors and then run with it at FAC? What do we reckon? And while its a-sitting there we can take stock as some of the others are being tweaked as we speak....cheers, Casliber (talk · contribs) 09:15, 24 August 2007 (UTC)

I think Lamby's great features are the excellent illustrations.....oh now look what Sheepy's gone and done...cheers, Casliber (talk · contribs) 01:47, 25 August 2007 (UTC)
Speed demon! How many times per minute do you refresh your watchlist, Cas? Hahahaha Sheep81 01:51, 25 August 2007 (UTC)
I obviously think Acro is pretty good or I wouldn't have posted it from my sandbox, but I think it could really use some images for one thing. I'm not really sure about the taxobox image, it came from the Russian wiki and I can't vouch for its copyright status. I'll be gone tonight and tomorrow (starting now), so I won't be able to do much with the article until Sunday. Have at it. Sheep81 01:54, 25 August 2007 (UTC)

Help needed with quirky dinosaur article

Biological issues in Jurassic Park is, IMAO, a demonstration of one of Wikipedia's principal strengths: an interesting article on a valid subject that you'd never expect to see in an ordinary encyclopedia. Unfortunately it was largely written by anonymous users with a grasp of dinosaurs but less of WP conventions, and an extremely isolated article, and it looked both when it was AfD'd due to OR concerns. There the idea was found valid, the only concern was whether the article should be improved or destroyed entirely and started from scratch. The discussion is now temporarily suspended (first time THAT worked) and we need your skills for the former, both in knowledge and in manpower.

There's time until the end of August - likely extendable if necessary, especially since I certainly managed to take my time before asking for help. :| (If it helps, I may be diagnosed with ADHD next week.)

I'm still new to WikiProjects, so if you have suggestions or better ideas please voice them, and if I've gone about asking for help in the wrong way, slap me with a fish. --Kizor 23:38, 22 August 2007 (UTC)

Well, giveing the article a qucik once-over, it does seem like a majority of the article is at least original synthesis. How big a problem this is, I don't know. Much of it also lacks sources, I guess because it's hard to find a source that says Procompsognathus was not venomous, etc. Some things, like the lcaim that Chricton wanted human-sized raptors for the novel, shouold be eaisly citable. I'm sure there are dozens of "Making of JP" books out there. Some of it is pure and simple fanwanking (rain impeding the smell of T. rex, etc.). The article needs a major re-write, and I'm not sure if what's left wouldn't be better off merged into the main JP articles. Dinoguy2 01:54, 23 August 2007 (UTC)
If I were a political campaigner, I'd say that our organisation should distance ourselves from this article as much as possible. But since I'm not, I'll just say that the article is what could turn out to be a problematic article. Too much OR and frankly, it's one of those subjects which will have people nominating it for AfD. Spawn Man 11:15, 23 August 2007 (UTC)

I have read a good book by Rob Desalle and David Lindley called the science of jurassic park and the lost world. It pretty much debunks everything in the JP. I absolutly hate jurassic park, it is a monster movie and has many inaccuracies. T.Neo 19:10, 23 August 2007 (UTC)

It was alrady listed for AfD here once, Neo - if you still have the book it would be great to use it as a reference if you think the article is worth keeping. cheers, Casliber (talk · contribs) 22:15, 23 August 2007 (UTC)

Iguanodon queued

I can't believe we didn't queue this one up to go on the front page...or have I completely missed something....cheers, Casliber (talk · contribs) 09:51, 24 August 2007 (UTC)

Majungasaurus featured

'nuff said. cheers, Casliber (talk · contribs) 23:18, 25 August 2007 (UTC)

Woot! Well done, Sheep! :) Firsfron of Ronchester 23:27, 25 August 2007 (UTC)
That was very fast - I'd been waiting for some other nonmembers to comment before I said anything, but for the record I think it's worthy, too. Congratulations! J. Spencer 03:01, 26 August 2007 (UTC)
Woohoo, good work guys! Dinoguy2 03:12, 26 August 2007 (UTC)

FAC idea

I've been thinking about how to get more feedback about our featured article candidates from people who aren't in WP:DINO. We all know our articles are worthy by the time they get that far, and so does Raul654, since he easily passes them each time, but I dunno, it looks kind of sketchy if all or most of the supports are from us. I wonder if maybe a long list of supports from Project members is a bit intimidating to reviewers. So I was wondering if we should maybe set up some sort of very informal Project approval process before sending an article on to FAC. No special page necessary, maybe just on here, before we send an article up to FAC, do a quick tally to see how many of us support (or oppose, of course!) it as written or with certain changes. That way we could hash out our critiques before sending it up, and then on the FAC we can just put like "Support from WP:DINO" with a link to this page or something. Just having one support instead of five or six might convince Raul to let the nomination sit longer, or entice reviewers who might otherwise see a long list of supports and move on to another article that doesn't look like a foregone conclusion. Just an idea I was kicking around in my head at a party last night (lame, I know). Thoughts? Sheep81 10:35, 26 August 2007 (UTC)

Sounds like a great idea. I'd love to see these things get more input from non-paleo people... Dinoguy2 10:41, 26 August 2007 (UTC)
Me too, I don't want to add another layer of bureaucracy or anything but it might help in this case. Sheep81 10:48, 26 August 2007 (UTC)
There seems to be a general tail-off in reviewers across the board for FAC, though I might be mistaken on that one. Though I don't like the sounds of making it harder for uz I do concede that it adds some transparency about who is voting. cheers, Casliber (talk · contribs) 11:43, 26 August 2007 (UTC)
What is the problem with FAC? Sheep81 12:00, 26 August 2007 (UTC)
Not even sure there is one - there are alot of nominations - I just had a sense that they weren't getting reviewed as much, but then again I only look at a minority of noms. Nothing much on the talk page cheers, Casliber (talk · contribs) 12:17, 26 August 2007 (UTC)
I like Sheep's idea, and hope it will bring more "regular editors" in to review articles. One problem I forsee is when WP:DINO is split: for example, when 4 of us approve, but the fifth person, who was offline for a few days, shows up and feels the article isn't ready. Does the endorsement get revoked? Or...? We should have a way of dealing with this before it (inevitably) happens. Firsfron of Ronchester 18:58, 26 August 2007 (UTC)
We could have a set time for adding comments and then if someone is late, they have to use the FAC page. Why not try it on Lambeosaurus? I think it's pretty close, albeit somewhat soft in the lead, and it could use derivations of species names (granted, there are about a dozen mentioned in the article). J. Spencer 21:50, 27 August 2007 (UTC)
You can count me out (In the good way). I rarely support a dinosaur article straight off, ie, I usually have some minor concerns and may put "oppose" until the problems are fixed. Also, I'm not as active on the project right now and probably won't be for a long while, so my vote would not be seen as a another dino member piling on, but rather someone who knows about dinos and contributes occassionally placing their view. I don't want other people talking for me. I'd prefer if we stuck with the tried and tested notification that you're from project dino and may be biased. So no, I'm a firm oppose on this idea, but if I was like you guys and voted support all the time, I'd probably support this as well. Besides, why should we doubt ourselves when we all know that our articles are top notch? If down the line someone says our nomination methods are suspect, we can quite easily suggest that they review any of our featured articles and we wont comment on the review. I garuntee you, not one would ever be deleted. We have nothing to worry about. Making us sound like some all agreeing cult would only worsen our situation as you'd be implying that all 70+ members of wikiproject dino agree, which is not possible. So no, bad idea in my books. Spawn Man 04:07, 28 August 2007 (UTC)
Changed my mind. :) I agree with your last point. Besides, we *do* analyze prospectives before we send them out, which is similar to the proposal. J. Spencer 13:09, 28 August 2007 (UTC)


I know Platy article need more enlargement, but how is it now? Please, clarify me all errors you find or say me texts and sections that need changes to do them. Thanks. Dropzink 09:16, 28 August 2007 (UTC)

I haven't had time to look closely, and I've got to run, but what I've seen is much improved. Good work! J. Spencer 13:11, 28 August 2007 (UTC)
As you pointed out, the article definitely needs enlargement - there's even one paragraph which is only one sentence long and several others with only a couple of sentences. Overall it looks good, but I'm not so sure about the pop culture section. Keep up the good work. Spawn Man 08:57, 29 August 2007 (UTC)

Cretaceous–Tertiary extinction event FAC help

I've done a complete restructuring of this article, moving from discussing the geological causes of the event (a separate article now K-T boundary). I've reviewed most critical clades of organisms that went extinct or survived the event. Let's be honest, the reason anyone reads the article is for dinosaurs which, because they all went extinct at the boundary, rates about two sentences. Can someone give some meat to the Dinosaur section of the article? I've found a very good review reference that discusses the reasons why some organisms survive and some didn't (dinosaurs were big, not very good at hiding from the environmental effects, and needed too much food). I'm fighting to get it to FAC, so whatever any of you dino experts can do will be greatly appreciated. OrangeMarlin Talk• Contributions 23:26, 31 August 2007 (UTC)

Would it be appropriate to include more on the "were dinosaurs on their way out or not already" discussion? J. Spencer 03:37, 1 September 2007 (UTC)
I just did some work on the dinosaur section. I didn't feel like getting into a tedious "he said, she said" with various researchers and their papers (which if you check the comments of the next paper chronologically are invariably fatally flawed in some way or another), but the diversity is really difficult to interpret, and at any rate "declining" is a loaded word: if there was a decline in diversity, were dinosaurs on their way out, or just going through a dip that had happened many times before? J. Spencer 16:54, 3 September 2007 (UTC)
With regards to the dinosaurs being on the way out, I don't want this article to be a dinosaur one exclusively. I think a full on debate (such as a debate can be done in an encyclopedic article) should be in a fork, because it could take an article to discuss it. I don't like the paleocene dinosaur BS (I find it hard to believe that through all of the analysis of the K-T boundary, we've found like 4 bones that may be above the boundary). However, my science brain won't allow absolutes, so if there is evidence it should be presented. OrangeMarlin Talk• Contributions 17:53, 3 September 2007 (UTC)
I concur; all I did was soften the statement, note that there is a debate, and otherwise let it stand. As you said, there's really not much to say: they went extinct, they may or may not have been declining, and some people say they have scraps from just above the K-T. This article certainly isn't the place to get into the gradualists versus the catastrophists, late 1900s/early 2000s-style. J. Spencer 18:23, 3 September 2007 (UTC)
Don't worry, I happen to agree with your edits. I was very much concerned about WP:WEIGHT. OrangeMarlin Talk• Contributions 02:15, 4 September 2007 (UTC)

Dinodata once more available without login

Dinodata no longer requires registration, so we can get rid of those notes and have the proper links again. J. Spencer 13:48, 1 September 2007 (UTC)

That's good to hear, J. Firsfron of Ronchester 00:45, 2 September 2007 (UTC)
When we were fixing the links to Dinodata yesterday, there were about four that I completely skipped. These were links to Dinodata biographical pages. I couldn't find them anywhere on Dinodata, despite using the search tool. Firsfron of Ronchester 18:58, 3 September 2007 (UTC)
Huh. I was just using bibliography links and saying so. The only biography was that of Nicholas Hotton III, and that was under Paleozoica. J. Spencer 20:53, 3 September 2007 (UTC)