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Re: Sauropod drinking



In a post from Richard W Travsky <rtravsky@uwyo.edu>:
>>If the right vegetation was
>> around in the Jurassic/Cretaceous, then given the large amounts being
>> consumed by sauropods it might be quite reasonable for them to get what
>> water they needed from this source.

>I considered examples like that, but I have a feeling there's probably an
upper limit >on body size for this to be practical (and survivable).

>What's the largest contemporary animal that obtains its water this way?


 - My understanding is that the dinosaurian H20 metabolism is considered to
be generally birdlike rather than mammalian - i.e. ***water-conserving
rather than water-wasteful***  (didn't somebody just post on this recently?)

A) This is often considered to be an important factor that gave the early
dinosaurs the edge to expand over the synapsid (proto-mammal) group in the
dry Triassic.

B) The three largest living birds are dryland herbivores (w/ some omnivory?)

C) So, sauropods very likely needed much less water than mammals -- a
sauropod might have been not so much a multi-ton elephant as a multi-ton
ostrich!!

(BTW - how does the coprolite data bear on this??)

Jeffrey Willson <jwillson@harper.cc.il.us>