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Re: Velociraptor Footprints
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>Date: Tue, 19 Aug 1997 14:10:22 -0700
>From: Janet Nash <email@example.com>
>Subject: Velociraptor Footprints
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>Solved the riddle of velociraptor feet and the lack of tracks !?
>My theory is that they simply hitched a ride on the larger "quad"
>herbivores. Although these were too large for prey, they would have
>been ideal "platforms" for single or small groups of velociraptors to
>survey the terrain and get around. Velociraptors' arms and feet seem
>ideally suited to maintaining a grip. The sickles probably functioned
>as spurs to kick the lumbering "platforms" into action when necessary !
>We can imagine out 'raptors dropping off occasionally for a spot of
>unsuspecting lunch - perhaps protoceratops. This behaviour is not
>entirely without analogs. Egrets, secretary birds and many other
>species ride large herbivore "platforms" in a similar way, using them
>spot and flush out prey. Humans use a variety of such "platforms".
>Perhaps we were not the first "cowboys" in the West !
>Regards Roy Nash
Actually that theory doesn't make sense ecologically. As a recent
lister pointed out there has to be some benefit to both animals. Egrets
and herons ride on animals only to eat the bugs and little animals
jumping upfrom beneath their rides feet. Unless dromaeosaurs ate small
things exclusively there would be no reason for this. And also
dromaeosaurs would be more common than as seen today if they were able
to control the herbivores this way. This theory is akin to suggesting
that pachys used the domes on their heads for transmitting telepathic
messages so they can control the animals around them.
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