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Re: Tyrannosaur gastoliths? and balance



jamolnar@juno.com

> If dinosaur digestion is similar to modern bird digestion, T. rex (and
> other meat-eating dinosaurs) wouldn't have gastroliths.  Carnivorous
> birds have thin-walled and bag like gizzards that act as storage places
> for indigestible parts, like teeth, claws, bones, scales, feathers, etc.
> These parts are later coughed up in pellets <snip>

For T. rex, who knows...perhaps some regurgitation of the really big
bones
(ends of femurs, etc) may have occured.  But if tyrannosaurs had
stomach acid of the pH strength of today's Great White Shark,
then it is more likely that the animal just waited for 4-5 days or
so and let the stomach turn the bones to a jelly-like consistancy.

For the smaller theropods, there is compelling evidence that
up-chucking of undigestables wasn't universally practiced.

Karen Chin (U.C. Santa Barbara) does dino-poop, and she does dino-
poop darned dandy!  She has reported smaller cylindrical coprolites
from overbank facies that do not resemble typical croc poo.
These cop's contain a lot of partially-digested bone fragments
(croc coprolites are also loaded with bone fragments).

If these cop's are from mid-sized to small theropods, then it
appears that a lot of the swallowed bones
"took a round-the-world-vaction"...
...so to speak.

This of course doesn't completely falsify the hypothesis that
some material was indeed "Ralphed".
                     <pb>