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Re: Dinosaur Diet -- was Re: CRETACEOUS VARANIDS

T. Mike Keesey wrote:
> On Tue, 9 Dec 1997, Thomas R. Holtz, Jr. wrote:
> > On the other hand, omnivory or herbivory has been suggested for
> > therizinosauroids, oviraptorosaurs, ornithomimosaurs, and troodontids among
> > the non-avian theropods, and omnivory for basal sauropodomorphs
> > ("prosauropods") and ceratopsians among the traditional "herbivores".  We
> > could discuss the various evidence used to support these hypotheses, if you
> > wish.
> I've heard about all of these except for ceratopsians. Since when are
> ceratopsians possible omnivores? I guess the beak could do some serious
> damage ... but what evidence is there?
> --T. Mike Keesey
> tkeese1@gl.umbc.edu
> http://umbc.edu/~tkeese1 -- Dinosaur Web Pages

There was once the suggestion of the Australian ornithopod
Muttaburrasaurus having been partially carnivorous. It's not entirely
unknown for modern herbivores to take the occational bit of meat
or bone (bird-eating deer, for example). From a purely functional
view point the ceratopsian beak would seem ideal for tearing off
strips of meat. Didn't that protoceratops have part of the unfortunate
velociraptor in its beak? If so then it seems that, at the very least,
they weren't too put off by the taste of meat :-)
        Dann Pigdon
        Melbourne, Australia

        Dinosaur Reconstructions:
        Australian Dinosaurs: