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Re: Sauropod Trunks: Nuh-uh!
Tend to agree with Ralph's (gbabcock's) evaluation of the unlikelihood of
sauropod trunks, especially given the absence of "scars from big trunk
muscles near the edges of sauropod nares."
Largely also in agreement with, "Another objection to the sauropod trunk
should be the pointlessness of it." Certainly, the peg-like nature of
diplodicid teeth suggests a foliage-stripping feeding method which would not
seem to benefit from the presence of a trunk.
But--_pure_ conjecture here--perhaps the new titanosaur nest findings will
shed some more light on the possibility of sauropod parental care--if
sauropods _did_ tend their nests and hatchlings. Findings of juvenile
remains among those of adults in sauropod bone beds and the much touted
trackways that seem to show smaller individuals in the center of sauropod
"herds?"--"flocks?"--whatever collective is appropriate--do point toward
complex rearing and social behavior.
So--conjecture again, mind you--how does an 80 foot long _Diplodocus_ return
a stray 15" hatchling to its nest?
A trunk would do a rather nifty job of that and provide the "adaptive
advantage" Ralph says is absent--wouldn't it?