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Re: Deinonychus packs



>> It seems to me that's its assumed that deinonychus and it's counterparts
>> are pack hunters. As far as I can tell, this is based on fossils found in
>> vicinity of each other. 
>> Sherry Michael

>IN CLOSE ASSOCIATION WOULD BE A BETTER CHOICE OF WORDS.  THE SITE WHICH
>ALL THE PACK BEHAVIOR WAS INFERRED FROM WAS IN SOUTHERN MONTANA.  THE
>REMAINS OF AT LEAST 4 INDIVIDUALS (DEINONYCHUS) WERE FOUND IN ASSOCIATION
>WITH FRAGMENTARY REMAINS OF A SINGLE LARGE HERBIVOROUS DINOSAUR
>(TENONTOSAURUS).  THE MATRIX WAS VARIEGATED SANDY BENTONITIC CLAYSTONE AND
>SOME COARSE CHANNEL SAND, REPRESENTING OVERBANK FLOODPLAIN DEPOSITS.

  I am not saying that I think Deinonychus did not hunt in packs, but we have
to be careful here. This is very poor evidence. The carcass of an already dead
Tenontosaurus would become a focal point for individual hunter/scavengers to
gather. Is there any evidence that the Deinonychus' actually killed the
Tenontosaurus? This would seem like a risky venture. Like modern wolves, packs
have to be desperately hungry to attack aduly, healthy, and potentially
dangerous prey. A pack that suffers too many casualties will not survive. I
suspect that Deinonychus would go after smaller prey whenever possible.

Scott Horton
Geophysicist/Computer Programmer