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Re: ANKYLOSAUR CLUBS *
> When a part of an animal evolves some kind of offensive purpose, it usually is
> for intraspecies combat first. Since the clubs could do considerable damage,
> suspect that they were used in display behavior, so that the likelyhood of
> actually coming to blows would be rare. Granted, the tails certainly could've
> been used to break the knees of a predator, but this is a secondary function.
Intraspecific combat among African lions, bison, moose, chamois (a
type of mountain goat), bears, hippoes, rhesus macaques, and chimpanzess,
can often result in serious injury or death. This is also known to
happen occaisionally in elephants and wild horses. Didn't someone mention an
antelope a while back that not only killed its opponent, but pushed the body
off a cliff?
Fighting may be a last resort when threats fail, but fighting animals
are perfectly willing to use whatever nasty armament they have, as well as
risk death and injury themselves, when sex is at stake. Many species,
including seals and wild boars, have regions of toughened skin where injuries
inflicted by opponents might occur. Ankylosaurs, with thier impressive
armament, would be at less risk fighting each other than most species.
By the way, on subject of the mimicry idea: what would be the
point? And just how stupid were those tyrannosaurs anyway?