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Sauropod swimming and more



Most of us on the list grew up during a time when we were force-fed
stupid, lumbering dinosaurs, dragging tails, etc... dinosaurs were the
epitomy of an unsuccessful creature, evolutionary failures.  One of the
worst ideas to come out of this era was that the Sauropod needed to stay
submerged to handle the body weight of its enormous size.  Fortunately
this idea has fallen out of favor.  But now to say that they couldn't swim
at all due to water pressure is absurd.  These animals existed!!! For long
periods of time!  Why are all these limitations always put upon these
animals?  We know just from the immense amount of time that these animals
roamed the earth that they must have been well adapted to their enviroment
and to situations that would occur.  In my view, of course Sauropods could
swim, most land animals can, and they definitely could have at least
waded.  I think the position of the nasal openings shows these animals
were capable of this at least.
        Another note on the nasal openings...relating the size of the head
to the overall size of the body.  Would that much more submergable
distance be obtained by moving the nasal area from the front of the skull
to the top?  What is this a foot maybe?  Seems that there would be another
purpose for this.  Possible for the mode of drinking as has been mentioned
in a few posts.
        Also about Sauropod foot structure not being able to handle soft
ground...  Of course all land animals avoid deep mud but how successful
would you be as a large animal if the slightest bit of mud caused you to
bogg down?  Let's hope there isn't a significant amount of rainfall.
Surely the foot of a Sauropod was able to spread to deal with this
problem.
        Quick note...Sauropods had long necks, they had a range of motion
with these necks, blood must reach the head, successful animals do not
faint all of the time...conclusion Sauropods had no problem getting blood
to the head.  
        On the Zallinger mural...T-rex as shown must have rubbed his arse
on the ground when he walked....Also could T-rex swim?????  I'd like to
see him try to keep his head afloat with his little puny arms!  Maybe he
avoided the water.
        Are there any animals who drown when they enter the water???i.e.
have no ability to swim at all?

-Bill Parker
Northern Arizona University