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Re: GSP's hadrosaurian reconstructions
Just a clarification of what I was questioning. I was NOT saying "How
dare he put these silly-looking huge necks on the hadrosaurs" - I was asking
2 distinct questions (although I was imprecise in asking them) -
1) What precisely were the silhouettes of the hadrosaur necks
supposed to represent - a flap of skin (as some artists have put on the back
of _Parasaurolophus_'s head and neck), OR a 'withers'-type neck (as
mentioned in Sam Girouard's post)?
2) What were these ideas based on?
I have had answers to both these questions: 1) a 'withers' type neck and
2) based on fossilized skin impressions (including nuchal ligaments).
I still say that SOME of the reconstructions look silly to me - remember
I grew up starting in the 1950's, so I've seen several variants of
reconstructions throughout the years. Also, remember that I'm from Phila.,
where I have had close contact with _Hadrosaurus folkii_ and _Corythosaurus_
at ANSP since 1985 (and actually since 1958 in their original mounts).
Naturally, I think that I know what a hadrosaur ought to look like. :-)
Looking over the reconstructions in the publication, I LIKE the thick
neck with _Shantungosaurus_, _Saurolophus_, _Anatotitan_, _Kritosaurus_, and
_Edmontosaurus_. I DON'T LIKE the neck with _Ouranosaurus_,
_Tsintaosaurus_, _Corythosaurus_, and _Parasaurolophus_.
Essentially, I find that the longer-necked morphs don't look as good as
the shorter-necked morphs - AT LEAST TO MY ADMITTEDLY PREJUDICED EYES.
It is quite likely, as Peter pointed out in his post (below), that not
ALL of the hadrosaurians had the same exact neck - even if Greg decided to
draw them that way (True, Peter was talking about iguanas, but...).
As I said in my original post - I LIKE A LOT OF GREG'S WORK!!! I just
had a few nits to pick with these particular reconstructions.
(By the way, way back in 1985-1986, I didn't like the nearly
chicken-like drawing of _T. rex_ that Greg had created for the ANSP [on a
blackboard, originally]. I still have some specific problems with that
picture, but the avian nature of the _T. rex_ is no longer a problem to me -
and hasn't been for some time).
From: Peter Von Sholly <email@example.com>
To: firstname.lastname@example.org <email@example.com>; firstname.lastname@example.org <email@example.com>
Date: Sunday, August 30, 1998 4:21 PM
Subject: Re: GSP's hadrosaurian reconstructions
>Greg Paul has also put dermal spines down the entire necks and backs of all
>sauropods (brachiosaurs anyway) because of one authenticated specimen which
>shows such structures on the tail of one kind of diplodocid. This is the
>kind of artisitc license that creates an image which reverberates virtually
>forever in the media and is damn hard if not impossible to change if new
>discoveries show different facts. The problem, as I see it, is that many
>people may see those images and accept them as known facts. There are
>iguanas that have spines like that today, and also iguanas that don't. If
>these animals were know from the fossil record only, we'd be putting spines
>on all iguanas because some had them. And we KNOW this is not the case,
>since iguanas are still around to look at.
>As another example, I also recall that Greg rendered the horns on the head
>of his Carnotaurus as very flattened (on PDW)- whereas they are much more
>conical in shape. Now Greg may realize the first image was wrong, and
>"fix" it later... (I believe his reference material was limited back when
>he did the drawing) but that doesn't take back the initial image which has
>been copied ad nauseum in books and models- just because people saw it in
>Dinogeorge tries to say that mistakes are no big deal because they can be
>corrected, but if the mistakes get made into pictures and published, how
>are people to know that the artist may have changed his mind later?
>I don't know about those hadrosaur necks- except that certain people I know
>disagree with Greg's interpretation. That doesn't make Greg wrong either.
>But suppose something causes him to change his mind at some later date?
>Those pictures are still going to be out there, informing or misinforming
>I have no easy solution, nor do I place blame on anyone (especially Greg-
>he can't help it if he's very influential).
>I remember when I was young and saw dinosaur skeletons in museums and
>books. I had NO IDEA that I was often looking at composite skeletons or
>miles of plaster. I also had no idea how few skulls and bones really
>existed for certain animals, nor how incomplete they may have been. All
>this means is that I now have the desire to know what is real and what is
>know, before I start believing everything I see.
>From: DinosØMP <firstname.lastname@example.org>
>Subject: Re: GSP's hadrosaurian reconstructions
>Date: Sunday, August 30, 1998 7:27 PM
>Allan Edels wrote:
>> Was this a misprint, or are these a flap
>> of skin instead of a massive neck? I'd be interested in what was
>> to be conveyed here. (I think that some of the reconstructions look good
>> with these necks, but _Corythosaurus_ and _Maiasaura_ and several others
>> look silly - at least to me).
>Greg Paul doesn't draw thick necks, just because he feels like doing it. If
>and Corythosaurus looks silly to you, it's not he's fault! Thick nuchal
>actually been fosilized around the neck of Hadrosaurs (among other skin
>like a throut pouch at Maiasaura), and should be there at all Hadrosaurian
>reconstructions made after that discovery.
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