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Re: BURROWING SEGNOSAURS



>With regard to speculation on the diet of these dinosaurs, ascribing an
>insectivorous diet when the animals have edentate-type claws is probably
missing
>the point when edentates that hang around trees (the sloths - NPI) are
>herbivorous.

Sloths are not the only arboreal "edentates" (the proper term is
Xenarthrans).  The Tamandua and Silky Anteater, both insectivorous, also
qualify.

>One question that arises, however, is 'Are segnosaur claws like those of
>megatheres?'. Though I've seen a fair few megathere claws, I'm none too sure
>here, but my recollection is that they are far more hook-like than those of
>_Segnosaurus_ et al.

I assume the claws of megatheres may have served to "hook" branches of trees
to bring them within reach, not to dig up termitaria (a "burrowing" function
that keeps the animal well above ground).  A comparison to the claws of
giant anteaters or aardvarks might be more to the point.
--
Ronald I. Orenstein                           Phone: (905) 820-7886 (home)
International Wildlife Coalition              Fax/Modem: (905) 569-0116 (home)
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