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Re: _T. rex_ strikes ( was Ceratopsian frills)

From: stevet@shelby.net (Stephen Throop)

 > _T rex's_  big head was about 6 meters from its center of mass.  Police
 > use sledge hammers on doors, but could you hit a moving person where
 > you intended if you used a sledge hammer as a nightstick?

That depends on how big the person is, and how precisely located
the strike needed to be.

An edmontosaur is a *huge* animal (it makes a moose look small).
It seems likely that T. rex could manage to move fast enough to
contact such an animal.  And I doubt that great precision was
necessary - repeated slashing bites would bring down the prey
just as thoroughly as a choking bite such as used by cats.

 > Weren't America's plains once overrun with millions of buffalo whose
 > size made them fairly invulnerable to wolves?

Already really answered, but I will add the tag that the prairie wolf
may well have subsisted *mainly* on buffalo. (or at least some packs
of wolf did).

 > Suppose _T rex_ bit into a huge sauropod's bony shoulder.  When the
 > prey reacted, the awesome force would be unevenly distributed on the
 > teeth.  If some broke off, wouldn't others follow?

Perhaps, but T. rex teeth are *normally* break off from time to time.
That is why they are the most commonly found part of the animal!
[T. rex probably lost a tooth or two during most hunts].

So what if the prey pulls away - that just tears a big chunk of flesh
out.  T. rex just bites again, and again, and again. (I probably
favored the fleshy parts rather than the bony ones anyway, as that
would do more damage per bite).

 > It's the "battleships" I wonder about.

I would not say T. rex was built like a battlship, more like a
battlecruiser - fast and lethal.

 > I assume _T rex's_ arms were not its primary weapons.

Probably true, but they may have been more use than you think.  They
were well placed to grab an _Edmontosaurus_ or _Triceratops_ on the
back and hold it in place for the teeth to rend.

Any relation to Wayne Throop?

swf@elsegundoca.ncr.com         sarima@ix.netcom.com

The peace of God be with you.