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Re: Speedy tyrannosaurs

>>A - hadrosaurs were not THAT much slower than tyrannosaurs
>This is certainly lucky for the hadrosaurs, otherwise they might not have
>gotten around much. Various folks who study these animals, such as Jim Farlow
>and Jack Horner have suggested that the large, heavy tyrannosaurs were slow
>moving and not galloping across the landscape like possessed chickens (or 
>40-foot roadrunners for that matter). The anatomy of the beasts suggests a
>modest top speed. Anatomy, biomechanics, gravity, the inertia of a top-heavy
>biped all would seem to suggest that tyrannosaurs were incapable of either a
>short-burst or a sustained bout of swift movement.

However, no large ornithopod (Iguanodon, Ouranosaurus,
hadrosaurid, etc.) had any of the cursorial adaptations found in even the
largest tyrannosaurid (i.e., elongate and gracile distal limb elements,
derived metatarsals for the transmission of force, etc.).  All in all, a large
tyrannosaurid would have been capable of a more rapid burst of speed than a
hadrosaurid, which is all it would need.

Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
Vertebrate Paleontologist
Dept. of Geology
University of Maryland
College Park, MD  20742
Email:Thomas_R_HOLTZ@umail.umd.edu (th81)
Fax: 301-314-9661