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Re: Bone heads

On Fri, 14 Jul 1995 DAVEH47@delphi.com wrote:

> Paul (pwillis@ozemail.com.au) writes:
> >What is the current accepted wisdom on what pachycephalosaurs used their
> >heads for? I think that the case for male to male combat holds as much
> >water as the Rainbow Warrior (No 1, not No 2). The head is better designed
> >for delivering a Liverpool Kiss to an impending predator. What is hte
> >general feeling out there?
> The head-butting theory is conventional, but IMHO, not wisdom. :)
> Besides the head-butting and somewhat more likely T. rex-butting 
> ideas, there is one other theory I've seen: In John McLoughlin's book,
> _Archosauria_, he suggests that pachycephalosaurs kept their heads 
> down and the bony dome pointed forward to quickly push tall, thick
> vegetation out of its way as it ran.  This seems at least somewhat
> plausible...at least until our wretched pachyceph ran into a 
> giant redwood or dosing _Euoplocephalus_ it its path! :)

Don't forget many Pachycephalosaurids also sported an array of long horns 
and hornlets along the margins of their skulls.  I also believe that head 
butting was common practice amoungst Pachycephalosaurids, but not as 
dramatic as the head smashing displayed by big horn sheep.  I tend to 
favor a brute force head to head shoving match.  As for the horns and 
bumps...great for defense against prediators...against Tyrannosaurids 
however, run for your life!!!

---John Schneiderman (dino@revelation.unomaha.edu)