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Re: CONVERGENT CAUDAL CLUBS



Norm King wrote;

> In the case of ankylosaurs, they were probably slow, plodding
> animals.Their tails could have made an easy target for pursuing
> tyrannosaurs, which most certainly could have kept up with them.

Even if the animal was slow in terms of horizontal speed (which may or
may not be true), it wouldn't mean that every part was equally slow.
A snap of the tail muscles could get the club moving at a decent clip,
which would prove to be a formidable weapon.  Assuming for a moment
that the animal was slow in speed, a fast-acting tail would be a
decent deterrent for even the most daring of theropods.

(snip)
> So, tail clubs helped them discourage predators from ripping off
> otherwise vulnerable tails (maybe also the spiky tails of
> stegosaurs, although I know one can make a better case for
> aggressive capability there).

The caudal and lumbar vertebrae in question on both animals are fairly
massive, it would take a great deal of force to remove the tail.
Probably would require more force than even Rex could muster, IMNSHO.

> Then, once you have a neat appendage like that, you might find all
> sorts of other uses for it.  For example, maybe ankylosaurs whacked
> trees to announce their territory, their presence to prospective
> mates, and/or intimidate rivals.  Speculation could go on
> indefinitely.

Certainly a possibility (by the way, consider my previous ideas on the
use of the club as withdrawn).


Rob

***
"Don't Panic."
        -HGTTG