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Clade
Subclade

Taxon
Taxon
Massospondylidae
Nominal Author
Huene 1914
2nd Nominal Author
Taxon Status ACTIVE
Comments

Galton (1990) used Massospondylidae as a monospecific taxon for Massospondylus carinatus. Sereno (1998) defined the taxon as stem-based to include the well known prosauropod Massospondylus carinatus and any other prosauropods closer to it than to Plateosaurus engelhardti.

Basal saurropodomorph relationships are poorly resolved by all recent studies (Sereno 1999, Yates 2003, Yates and Kitching 2003) largely because of the uniformity of their osteology. Despite this flux in theirr relationships, ther eis usually a taxon of low-skulled basal sauropodomorphs allied with Massospondylus carinatus that usually includes Lufengosaurus hunei and sometimes Yunnanosaurus huangi. This may constitute the only subclade of basal sauropodomorphs that is possible to consistently link together in phylogenetic analyses.

The active definition is a first-order revision of the initial definition in Sereno (1998). Including Saltasaurus loricatus as an external specifier ensures that only the closest relatives of Massospondylus carinatus will be included, and does not depend on the monophyly of most or all prosauropods.

Potential Synonomy

Active Phylogenetic Definition
Active Definition
The most inclusive clade containing Massospondylus carinatus Owen 1854 but not Plateosaurus engelhardti Meyer 1837 or Saltasaurus loricatus Bonaparte and Powell 1980.
Shorthand
> Massospondylus carinatus but not Plateosaurus engelhardti or Saltasaurus loricatus.
Definitional Author
Sereno 1998
Definition Status checked
Definition Type STEM
Node-Stem Triplet STEM
Other Triplet Taxa
Plateosauria, Massospondylidae
Specifiers
Specifier(s) A
Massospondylus carinatus
Specifier(s) B
Specifier(s) C
Plateosaurus engelhardti, Saltasaurus loricatus
Qualifiers
+Taxon
-Taxon
Datum
Taxonomic Content
Publication Year Unknown
Unknown
Unknown
1998

Inactive Taxon Status
Rejection Criteria
Critique
 

Definitional History #1
Earliest Record
All plateosaurs closer to Massospondylus than to Plateosaurus.
Latest Record
Sereno 1998:63
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