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Re: Theropod eating and attacking

In a message dated 97-08-27 15:40:02 EDT, Gautam Majurdar writes,

> I don't know about this. Do modern reptiles hork up parts of their prey?
>  >Taking a cue from crocs and snakes, I'd say no. 
>  Some snakes do. Egg-eating snakes (Genus Dasypeltis) swallow the egg
>  whole, use the downward pointing extension of the neck vertebrae to break
>  the egg and then regurgitates the shell in a pellet.

Thanks for the reminder. I  had forgotten about this particular genus of
snakes. So granted, they did regurgitate a pellet. However, under the
circumstances, I can hardly consider an egg as prey in the traditional sense
and since they only "pelletize" the shell, it seems that the parts one would
expect to return in a pellet get digested. And these are quite likely
embryonic.   My line of thinking was (and still is) along the lines of  bone,
fur and feathers being regurgitated after the prey item had been digested.
Consider Crocs, Kimodo Dragoons, Monitor Lizards, Tegus and Goanas. Do any of
these worf up pellets? And still, what of the truly carnivorous snakes? How
about the giant Pythons, Boas and Anocondas that munch on larger mammals ,
birds and even caimans?


Thomas R. Lipka
Paleontological/Geological Studies