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Re: triceratops question

Brian Franczak wrote:
> Christopher Tingley wrote:young from wolves in this manner. But musk oxen 
> live in very open areas
> with little plant-life to provide a place to hide. _Triceratops_ and other
> horned dinosaurs, on the other hand, lived in heavily-wooded areas and
> wouldn't need to evolve the type of behavior we see in musk oxen. It is
> also a mistake to use the *specific* behavior of an unrelated type of
> animal (in this case the musk ox, a mammal) to illustrate the behavior of
> an entirely different type of animal (dinosaurs). We can see some evidence
> for specific dinosaur behavior in fossils: they laid eggs, they took care
> of their young in the nest, they gathered together in groups... These are
> general types of behavior, though, and the only other type of behaviors for
> dinosaurs that we might speculate about that make sense are the types of
> behaviors we can see in their living relatives, the crocodiles (dinosaur
> ancestors) and the birds (dinosaur descendants). Dinosaurs did not behave
> like mammals.
> Brian Franczak (franczak@ntplx.net)
Brian I agree for the most part with your statements...But, it is
possible to put too much emphasis on the division between these two
groups in relation to some behaviors.Comparing dinos to mammals can be
helpful in getting good ideas about possible behavior patterns.Animals
display much convergence in both body type _and_behavior(regardless of
whether they are even in the same phylum).There certainly is NO fossil
evidence for "wagon ring" tactic but ,as has been pointed out, there is
good evidence for herding in some ceratopians.I don't see it as too much
of a stretch illustrating them doing so.And I think it likely that the
gregarious ceratopians used at least similar strategies regardless of
terrain.Elephants sometimes live in VERY heavily wooded areas and
display this same kind of aggressive "take a group stand"
strategy.Before someone reads this and starts comparing Chasmosaurus and
elephant intelligence I would like to say that intelligence does not
appear to be a limiting factor in many behaviors as opposed to what is
commonly stated.--Thanks, Sean C.