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On Wed, 2 Aug 1995 00:52:20, David Peters <DPterosaur@aol.com> wrote:
> I have built full-scale pterosaur skeletons of Dimorphodon, Nyctosaurus,
> Pteranodon and others of wood, plastic and wire. They were based on first
> hand inspections of actual fossils and casts of many specimens and they
> passed inspection (Dr. Padian saw them too) at the last SVP conference in
> Seattle. The models can be manipulated into almost any natural pose.
> I can hang my models quadrupedally from the trunks of pine trees which they
> seem perfectly suited to do. I can balance these skeletons on their hind
> legs alone. I can also put them on all fours on the ground.
> In contrast to the traditional quad model, by keeping the elbows of my
> tucked in (wings folded completely), the wing can move parasagittally by
> swinging either at the shoulder or at the elbow. The foreclaws in this
> position extend laterally, matching Pteraichnus prints exactly (in both
> digit I does not touch the ground). Thus pterosaurs were both bipedal and
> quadrupedal, like many living lizards.
> The value of a model is not its ability to demonstrate the truth, but to get
> closer to the truth than any previous model. I think these sculptures are a
> better model than any illustration because they are much harder to fudge
> subconsciously modify to fit a preconceived paradigm), which is a problem I
> see often in the literature and which I have caught myself at occasionally.
> (But that's science!)
digital photos or QuickTime clips that you could make available to the Dino
list folks? I for one would be very interested in seeing these positions and
motions you describe. It would be especially interesting to see some stop-
motion gait sequences.
Applications Programmer, Office of Educational Development
University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
Phone: 501/296-1087; FAX: 501/686-7053
e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com
-ex-archaeologist; lifelong afficionado of dinosaurs and their latter-day kin
(especially crows and other corvids)