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Re: Airbagged(was Dive!Dive!Dive!)

Jeff Martz writes;

>    The paper addressed this: how would a T.rex catch itself?  The largest
>runners alive today are all quadrapeds.  If they trip with one set of
>legs, they have another set of legs to keep them from falling.  T.rex
>does not.  Moreover, its arms were certainly to small to use to catch
>itself.  So, if it tripped while running the probablility of having an
>uncrontrolled fall would be pretty significant.

If I recall from when we had this discussion last year, someone mentioned
 that when an ostrich stumbles, it orients its body so it will land on it's
 side.   When it hits the ground, it expends the excess inertia by
 continuing to roll across the backbone, and onto it's other side (where it
 could easily get back on it's feet).  Perhaps T. rex used a similar
 strategy.  Twisting it's body sideways and rolling over it's spine to
 prevent a fatal fall.

Then again, perhaps the "Louisiana bayou" environment allowed for soft
 landings, further preventing any real damage being done from a fall.

Rob Meyerson
Orphan Vertebrate Paleontologist

"What a day to forget my wallet."