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Re: Theropod forearm musculature



Jerry's reply:

>Does anyone know of any work that has been done on the musculature of the
>theropod forearm using muscle attachment sites, tendon scars etc? If so,
>how close does this musuclature come to that of _Archaeopteryx_ and modern
>birds, particularly with regard to the M. biceps brachii, Pectoralis Major
>and the Supracoracoideus muscles.
>Any pointers to the literatue on this topic will be gratefully received.

Chris et al -

        A great deal of work was done on this for, at least, _T. rex_, by
Ken Carpenter whilst he was at MSU.  An overview of this was reported in
Horner's _The Complete T. rex_.  I don't have a more technical
reference...sorry.  I meant to ask Horner about the scaling of the power in
a _T. rex_ forelimb to such longer limbed theropods as _Allosaurus_, but I
didn't get a chance.  I would suspect, though, not having ever studied the
musculature of _Archaeopteryx_, that since the arms are so damned long
compared to the rest of the body, that they were fairly strongly muscled --
wiry, but strong.  They clearly served at least one, probably several major
functions (flight, maybe climbing, certainyl grasping and other
food-related functions) in the animal's life, and one doesn't undermuscle
portions of one's anatomy that one is going to use a lot!  8-)


Jerry D. Harris
Denver Museum of Natural History
2001 Colorado Blvd.
Denver, CO  80205
(303) 370-6403
Internet:  jdharris@teal.csn.net
CompuServe:  73132,3372

--)::)>   '''''''''''''/O\'''''''''''`  Jpq--   =o}\   w---^/^\^o

Overheard in the Denver Museum's
old Fossil Mammal Hall, from a mother
to her daugher:

"See there?  That's the camel-dinosaur, and
the horse-dinosaur, and the elephant-dinosaur..."

--)::)>   '''''''''''''/O\'''''''''''`  Jpq--   =o}\   w---^/^\^o




cnedin@geology.adelaide.edu.au,   nedin@ediacara.org
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Many say it was a mistake to come down from the trees, some say
the move out of the oceans was a bad idea. Me, I say the stiffening
of the notochord in the Cambrian was where it all went wrong,
it was all downhill from there.