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Alan Brush has asked me to forward a message he intended for the list.
So here it is (was that unceremonious or what :-):
Although there is no direct evidence it is prudent to assume that
dinos produced the full spectrum of epidermal pigments found in
comtemporary aminotes. These are melanin and derivatives. These
produce black/gray/ rust/ orange/red hues. It is possible that dinos
may have produced colors physically, for example, iridescent or
Rayleigh scattering. The latter would likely be limited in
distribution, that is localized.
What patterns were produced is yet another issue. Again, it is
assumed that they possessed the genetic machinery to produce the
full array of patterns such as bands, and spots. It would even be
possible to produce stripes. Certainly countershading was achieved.
What is not known is what role the colors and patterns played.
Those are the subject of current speculation. However, the
inferences regarding the chemical nature of the pigments, the
mechanisms that produce the patterns (their distribution across the
surface) are pretty well known.
Hope this helps.
Physiology & Neurobiology, University of Connecticut, Storrs