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Re: Horner & T. rex
>>> I was fortunate enough to go to the dedication of
>>>the T-rex in UC Berkeley today. The guest lecturer was John Horner.
>Just hoping I get invited as a guest speaker at a hadro function sometime :-(
Don't worry Thomas, your day will come :-)
>>and discuss several dino issues. Just for fun I showed each of them a
>>tooth I found in Montana this summer and asked them to identify it. A
>>grad student (supposedly a tooth expert) said definitely Albertosaurid,
>>possibly Daspletasaur. Another Horner grad student had said the same.
>>Padian declined to venture a guess. Horner was positive it was a Dromaesaurid
>Just a note: Horner is a hadrosaur specialist. Having some pretty good
>ideas as to who the Berkeley and U Montana grads are, I'd go with their
I would too! Incidently after finishing his talk on his scavenger
theory, Horner surprised the audience somewhat by saying, "I don't
even like T.rex; I don't study them. I'm interested in hadrosaurs".
>>I took notes during Horner's "T.rex as scavenger" talk; his points are
>>summarized below. I am still unconvinced, but I now have a much better
>>appreciation for that viewpoint. His arguments are:
>> - Predators *need* arms to catch prey.
>> T.rex arms are too small, with too limited movement to be used
>> to catch prey.
>Tell that to wolves, Lycaon pictus, and phorusrachids!
Not to mention all the predatory birds!
>> - T.rex teeth are often found among mono-specific bone bed sites;
>> implies T.rex was scavenging the mass deaths in herbivore herds.
>So what? Dromaeosaurid teeth are also found there. Almost no predator
>(except for some snakes, perhaps) will pass up a chance to scavenge.
>>These are good arguments, but I believe there are good rebuttals to each.
>>Certainly T.rex scavenged opportunistically, but I still don't buy Horner's
>>scavenger-only idea. I did challenge Jack on a couple of points:
>>1. I asked why T.rex would need stereo vision if it only scavenged.
>> He said stereo vision is a primitive feature that T.rex just inherited,
>> although it has no need for it.
>Ummm, no. Albertosaurus, Daspletosaurus, and other basal tyrannosaurids do
>not show the well developed potential for stereoscopic vision.
Also T.rex's snout was severely pinched to clear the field of vision (Bakker).
Achut Reddy So many fossils... so little time!