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Re: Food for second thoughts?



In a message dated 98-02-11 16:41:18 EST, Dann Pigdon writes:

<< There are some lion prides in parts of Africa where the herbivore
 populations have been decimated by poaching that have had to resort
 to hunting baby elephants in order to survive. They seem to manage
 quite well. Perhaps there is a certain technique to it that not
 every lion group can perfect.
 --  >>

No doubt, with practice, an otherwise efficient predator will prevail often
enough to survive, and when faced with new circumstances, will find ways to
practice new techniques and prevail.  My point was simply that physical
condition may have as much to do with the predator's *ability* to continue the
kill as it's 'mood', at least some of the time.  While some intended victims
get away early on in the fray, some, seemingly defeated, get away because they
have worn down the predator(s) to the point where it/they cannot complete the
kill, though it seems they've got it "in the bag".

The lion/elephant event I was thinking of involved some young lionesses, and a
small number of them.  Even a young elephant is a bit much for a small and/or
young pride.

Returning to dinos (of course I can!) the example you give of poaching (by
man) is inapplicable.  But the possibility that many, or at least some would-
be (wannabe?) dino-dinners escaped by the skin of their teeth (rear-quarter
hides?) due to the exhaustion of the predator seems supported by modern
predator-prey analogues.

Wayne A. Bottlick.