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Re: Dromaeosaur "sickle" claws

At 08:58 AM 8/23/97 PDT, you wrote:
> 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.

And your morphometric data to back this up is...?

>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.

Depending on the relative size of the animal, and where the felid grabs it,
big cat claws can be used to grasp, to hold, to pierce, or to rend.

>The only things that are adapted for slicing are serrated, 
>recurved teeth. NOT claws. 

Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
Vertebrate Paleontologist     Webpage: http://www.geol.umd.edu
Dept. of Geology              Email:th81@umail.umd.edu
University of Maryland        Phone:301-405-4084
College Park, MD  20742       Fax:  301-314-9661