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Deinonychus feet

     Since someone mentioned Deinonychus, I thought I would bring up 
something that has bothered me since I first saw illustrations of an 
attacking Deinonychus and also some of the dynamic skeletal displays. The 
animal is often shown with the "killer claw" toe extended and the other two 
to toes pointed somewhat downward. It would seem to me that this is a fairly 
"unnatural" position. I would think the force involved in such an attack 
would put  tremendous stress on the supporting ligaments and tendons. Is 
there someone on the list who can resolve this with me? Also, I am surprised 
no illustrators have speculated on the presence of a protective sheath 
around the Claw, similar to that of a cat. Since it seems to be such an 
important part of the anatomy needed to survive, I would think evolutionary 
forces would favor as much protection as possible. I assume only a mummified 
Deinonychus would resolve that, but I would still be interested in 
responces. THNX.

John Rafert       jrafert@xray.indyrad.iupui.edu
Indiana University
Department of Radiologic Sciences
Indianapolis, Ind.
1.317.274.5255............office & voice mail