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Re: The absurdity, the absurdity (was: Cooperating theropods?)
On Thu, 2 Apr 1998, Larry Dunn wrote:
> But this isn't an idea that everyone's keeping on the back burner as a
> remote possibility. It's accepted as a fact by many: "Raptorman," able
> to leap tall herbivores in a single bound.
Okay, I think we've made some progress then. I think I see what you're
saying more clearly. You're not completely dismissing the possibility,
you're simply saying that your analysis of the situation suggests that is
more likely that _Deinonychus_ did not hunt tenontosaurs. I can accept
that. I have not completely made my mind up on the matter, though I do
feel that modern mammals are generally poor analogues in some respects of
this example. We don't have any extant predators with as much "firepower"
to use a fine Paulian term. If dromies were among the most intelligent of
theropods and even the sauropods who had minute EQ's had enough sociality
to move in groups, I do not feel it necessary to rule out the group dromie
attack. But you are welcome to your opinion.
> Vertebrates generally hunt prey smaller than themselves. We're thus
> able to entertain the likely possibility that the owls were hunting the
> small mammals.
Yes, but the premise is nearly the same about the predation in both
> >In several million years there may be no conclusive evidence that
> >or lions or hyenas are pack hunters either.
> Well, for the sake of discussion I'll agree, and then I'll push all of
> the other extant carnivores off the cliff too. Are you saying that
> future paleontologists should then assume they were all pack hunters
> because there's no proof that they weren't?
Not at all, in fact I don't think we should *assume* anything about
behavior, but we should weigh all options.
> No inconvenience at all. I'm glad we're at last agreed that discussion
> of ant behavior has no place in this conversation! Let us banish spunky
> little Formica from the discussion.
Any invertebrate is a rather poor analogue in a discussion about
dinosaurs, you are right.