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Re: Dromaeosaur "sickle" claws

On Wed, 27 Aug 1997 11:02:12 -0700 (PDT) Dennis C Hwang
<dchwang@itsa.ucsf.edu> writes:
>On Tue, 26 Aug 1997, Peter Von Sholly wrote:
>> Not to be too nit-picky, but, I said nothing about serrations on the 
>>  Swords, scalpels, razors etc. need sharp edges for cutting, not 
>> tips.  If you ever cut yourself with an x-acto knife or razor, you 
>> it's a clean smooth cut.  Cat scatches rip and rake and bounce over 
>> surface.  Yes, they can dig in and tear the skin, but not slice it, 
>in the
>> way I would define SLICING.  It would seem to me also that "raptor" 
>> are more like cat claws than scalpels.  When we get to terms like 
>> pierce, cut, rip, etc. we need precise definitions if we want to be 
>> about the same things
>In which case we ought to simply use the commonly-accepted (in the
>forensic pathology milieu) terms for defining wound type:  
>laceration, and incision.
>Dromaeosaur claws (and, I would suspect, the vast majority of animal
>claws) would cause lacerations.  I can't think of anything in nature 
>would produce something I could call an incision.

Shark teeth, especially the serrated teeth of _Charcharodon megalodon_,
would come pretty close.

Judy Molnar
Education Associate, Virginia Living Museum
All questions are valid; all answers are tentative.