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Great study of data, questionable information added.

Posted by IDisposable on 24 Apr 2015 at 15:38 GMT

We can greatly appreciate the effort that went into metrics gathering on the various plates and their attributes, but the conclusions drawn are weak given a population of (estimated) 5 specimen and plates for a minimum of 2. Drawing this much inference from a tiny set of samples, especially after sorting them into sets just because of plate shape and the assumption that they are probably from different individuals (but certainly not provably).

This paper is interesting but untestable conjecture.

No competing interests declared.

RE: Great study of data, questionable information added.

EvanTS replied to IDisposable on 24 Apr 2015 at 21:58 GMT

Thank you for the appreciation.

The JRDI 5ES Quarry has a minimum of five individuals, not an estimated five.

The specimens from the JRDI 5ES Quarry do not make up the entirety of the sample for Stegosaurus mjosi studied in this paper. They only represent 1/4 of the plate sample (40 fairly complete plates). The total sample consists of a minimum of 11 individuals. This is not a bad sample size compared to many other dinosaur species.

In the paper, I discuss and reject the alternate hypothesis that one individual has both morphs of plates.

The paper is very clear as to which hypotheses are being tested and what statements are informed speculation (eg. assigning which morph is the male and which is the female). Sexual dimorphism is testable in the sense that alternate hypotheses can be tested and rejected.

No competing interests declared.