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Re: Dromaeosaur "sickle" claws

Right on.  And I'd like to emphasize that my objection to the term
"sickle" comes strictly from the implied connotation that it could CUT like
a sickle, not it's shape.  (I think it's part of the hype attendant to
Deinonychus).  Also I find it a little disturbing that no mention seems to
be made anywhere of "Daptosaurus", found and named by Barnum Brown in 1931,
not even as an acknowledgement that "Deinonychus" was already found,
collected, studied, mounted for display, drawn up as a skeletal restoration
etc. a  long time ago.  Ostrom did not discover this animal as we seem led
to believe.  I know that Brown didn't publish the name "Daptosaurus" so
Ostrom is within his rights to choose his own name, but it wouldn't hurt to
tell the whole story about this animal.  See the book "Disovering Dinosaurs
in the American Museum of Natural History" (Norell, Gaffney, Dingus) pp
129-131 for some illuminating information.  Also, in his skeltal
restoration, Brown found no need to do anything weird with claw #2, but set
it on the ground as one would expect.  The photo of the pes on page 131
looks fine and natural to me, with the #2 toe extended normally like the
other two.
> From: Matthew Troutman <m_troutman@hotmail.com>
> To: dinosaur@usc.edu
> Subject: Dromaeosaur "sickle"  claws
> Date: Saturday, August 23, 1997 8:58 AM
>  I have been carefully watching the arguments on the dromaeosaur " 
> sickle" claws and these are my positions and evidence. 
>  First of NO claw is specifically adapted to slice or sickle prey. Not 
> even cat claws. Slicing prey without the aid of serrations on a slicing 
> weapon is impossible. The claw just get " stuck" in the side of the 
> animal it is holding onto. Dromaeosaur claws most closely resemble 
> piercing claws like a woodpecker claw. So it is more likely that they 
> were using their claws not for slicing but for grasping. It is highly 
> unlikely that any animal is adapted to slash and slice prey with claws. 
> If any of you have ever seen a cat kill something it does not slice it, 
> it STABS it. The only things that are adapted for slicing are serrated, 
> recurved teeth. NOT claws. 
>  WMattTroutman
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