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> Why? If one now accepts that smaller Diplodocoideans could
> rear, what stops the larger ones from doing the same since they were
> functionally nearly identicle?
Oh, most species probably could, when necessary, they just had less
reason to do so.
As to functionally identical, I think Brachiosaurus was rather
different. Its heavy *fore*quarters and short tail would have made
rearing up *much* more difficult than in other types of saurpopds.
> Back to the beginning. If all those dinosaurs really do form a group as I
> believe, it would seem that having an upwardly arched neck is in fact
> primative for that group, not derived; and that the evolution of the
> "horizontal" neck of the Diplodocoideans is in fact derived: therefore
> showing that Diplodocoideans went through a lot of trouble to gain that type
> of neck so it had to be advantageous to some extent
I see what you are getting at. However, the ancestral condition
in the *Sauropodomorpha* is a "horizontal" neck, as it is seen is
the prosauropods, cetiosaurids and diplodocids. This may be an
apomorphy of the sauropodomorpha versus other dinosaurs.
The peace of God be with you.