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Re: Velociraptor Footprints( Arundel contemporary)
>In the case of the few modern birds that use larger mammals or reptiles for
>platforms, many do it to pick pests out of the flesh of their rider thereby
>performing a useful (symbiotic) service to the beast. Others use such
>platforms as lookout posts (so I have been told) and the "platform" gets
>nothing in return (commensalism) for the ride.
>Thomas R. Lipka
Even oxpeckers are not necessarily a boon to their riders; they may pick at
open sores, etc. Elephants, for example, rarely tolerate them. However, a
possible benefit some animals may derive from riders is the presence of a
lookout to warn them of predators (though I do not know if there is any
actual proof of this).
PS - don't forget the Carmine Bee-eater, which actually rides around on the
backs, not of mammals, but of large birds like the Kori Bustard.
Ronald I. Orenstein Phone: (905) 820-7886
International Wildlife Coalition Fax/Modem: (905) 569-0116
1825 Shady Creek Court
Mississauga, Ontario, Canada L5L 3W2 mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org