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Re: Face of the Titanosaur

Ralph Miller III wrote:

> Let's consider what the authors of the _Nature_ paper have to say.  Chiappe
> et al. state:
> "Because these skin casts do not overlie bones, it is impossible to
> establish their precise anatomical location.  However, the stripe probably
> ran along the embryo's back."  (end of quote).
> Because the rows of scales interlock but do not overlap or separate along
> their length, they cannot represent a set of lips (i.e. upper and lower
> lips).  If you are supposing that we have one lip on view in the
> photograph, perhaps the upper lip, terminating along the right edge of the
> scale rows, then these are multiple rows of enlarged lip scales (unlike the
> single row of enlarged scales present on the lips of snakes and other
> living reptiles) and the lower lip would either have only small bumpy
> tubercles ( for this is the skin texture directly adjacent to the enlarged
> scale rows) or the enlarged lower lip scales must be hidden from view
> underneath the enlarged scales of specimen PVPH-126.

        Yep, an upper lip, that's what it looks like to me. First of all the
stripe is not symmetrical which leads me away from Chiappe's dorsal
ridge interpretation. The stripe seems to be a triple row of enlarged
scales along a margain. How many margains are there on a sauropod? Lips,
nostrils, eyelids, anus? If it's an upper lip, the lower lip doesn't
seem to be visible, (or vice versa.)

But here's another thought; A lot of artists have shown this type of
stripe over a particularly prominent cranial feature, say the lachrymal
ridge just in front of the eye. More interpretations?

William Monteleone