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RE: Bipedal apatosaurs and stegosaurs?
Stan Friesen writes;
> > To answer Stan's comment about his rearing gazelle, I concede that
> > there may be behavioral exeptions at the species level (especially
> > for the smaller sauropods, where the energy lost by rearing would
> > be regained a la mode by the food source), but this behavior
> > wouldn't be common to the group.
Diplodicids specifically. The smaller species might be able to get away
with a rearing-for-feeding stance, where the loss of efficiency will be
made up for in the quality of the food source.
>No one that I know of is suggesting that ALL sauropds used a tripodal
>feeding stance. The suggestion is that *diplodocids* and *dicraeosaurs*
>used this mechanism.
Even among the diplodicids, I have a hard time seeing a herd of the big ones
all rearing up to feed on the tops of the pines. The loss of efficiency
aside, this kind of posture would make these animals more susceptable (sp?)
to predation. Imagine a Diplodicus reared up, with it's head in the
stratosphere. Along comes a hungry Allosaurus. Even if the Diplo saw the
theropod coming, it would take a lot of precious time for the animal to get
all feet on the ground and to engage it's tail for combat. During that
time, the allosaur could easily make an attack and cripple the animal long
before the Diplo would be in a position to do anything about it. A
recipe for extinction, IMHO.
Orphan Vertebrate Paleontologist
"If anything is going to go wrong, it'll happen at maximum velocity."