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Cooperative hunting techniques in mammals



I apologize for forgetting and misplacing the person and email 
concerning cooperative lion pride hunting techniques.  Please, excuse 
my disorganization.

I talked with Dr. Alan Shoemaker, who is a mammal expert, especially
predatory, and mammal curator at the zoo in Columbia.  He had studied 
lion behavior in the Serengeti and Masai Mara extensively and much 
more than I have observed.  There is no doubt that some prides 
exhibit advance hunting techniques such as driving prey into waiting 
pride mates.

The question is how this occured not if.  Even if a lion were to be able 
to abstract, how would she communicate with her pride mates on how to 
implement her plan?  I strongly imagine that this behavior evolved by 
learning in a stepwise manner early in the lion or its anscester's 
lineage and was eventually incorporated into the social structure of 
lion's behavior.  I am not even sure if it is instinctual or 
something that is learned and passed down from generation to 
generation.  It is highly likely that this kind of behavior as well 
as other aspects of lions' social behavior have much to do with lions 
being so successful (relatively speaking) as predators.

What does this have to do with dinosaurs?  It is my opinion, and only 
an opinion for what that is worth, that fast dinosaurs could hunt in 
packs and at least some did based on circumstantial evidence.  It 
would not make for cooperative hunting for a pack to recognize prey, 
catch it, kill it, then eat it.  They would have to cooperate enough 
not to kill each other over the carcass.  This is unlikely if they 
were evenly matched as would adults or juveniles of the same size.  

Dinosaurs filled the same niches that mammals now do.  It is 
unreasonable to expect that dinosaurs did not have some behavioral similarities
to mammals of today.  The development of higher brain tissue confers 
more behavioral possibilities but does not preclude dinosaur social 
behavior.  We already know they herded and nested together.  We 
suspect they gave advanced maternal care.  It is impossible for me 
not to imagine running after and catching prey together.

Michael Teuton
803-732-2327 Phone
803-749-6191 Fax