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Darren Naish wrote:

>This is not a feeble attempt to inject some discussion into a sobered 
and >mourning community. It just looks like it.

Why, because people are thinking before throwing something out? I am 
now reading more because there are more thoughtful messages to read.

>he doesn't think lateral flexibility was great in the
>tails of these animals (a synsacral complex ?often incorporates fused 
proximal>caudals) and motion in the vertical plane was just about 

But he did not manipulate a tail three dimensionally in space. Looking 
at bones and drawing them is not the same science as manipulating them 
on a skeleton. Besides, Coombs did not explain why the anterior caudal 
ribs are so elongated if not for muscles to swing the tail from side to 
side. There is nothing in the anatomy that precludes the animal 
crouching with its butt in the air to swing the club. The amount of 
movement between each vertebrae does not have to be great, but the 
effects will be cumulative down the tail to the club handle (fused 
caudals). As for the idea of mimicry, only in Euoplocephalus is the 
club spherical - i.e., skull like. In most other ankylosaurids, the 
club is elongated and low in profile, and sometimes wide; these 
certainly do not look remotely like a skull (or head). The idea of 
Tony's was interesting and I thought it worth suggesting - afterall 
that is how science grows.

Kenneth Carpenter
Dept. of Earth Sciences
Denver Museum of Natural History
2001 Colorado Blvd.
Denver, CO 80205