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Re: Biggest predators



-----Original Message-----
From: Thomas R. Holtz, Jr. <th81@umail.umd.edu>
To: ptnorton@email.msn.com <ptnorton@email.msn.com>
Cc: dinosaur@usc.edu <dinosaur@usc.edu>
Date: 16. marec 1999 14:23
Subject: Re: Biggest predators



>
>>>Whatever _Deinocheirus_ was doing, it was doing it much more like an
>>ornithomimosaur than like allosaurs or dromaeosaurs. <
>>
>>And what precisely were ornithomimosaurs doing with those claws anyway?
>
>Hooking and clamping.  Hooking and clamping *what*, I don't know: branches
>seem a likely candidate, but catching up smaller animals would work, too.
>

I'd second :whatever were ornithomimosaurs doing, Deinocheirus was doing -
only on a bigger scale. It might have been omnivorous (like bears and pigs).
The arms and claws seem well suited for digging, too.

On the other side, Therizinosaurs claws were exactly scythe-like with razor
sharp edge: One "slap" with the hand armed with those claws would shred the
opponent to ribbons (remember the Elm Street?). Perfect for cutting throats
of
long-necked dinosaurs.



>Despite popular (and some technical) descriptions to the contrary, there
is
>nothing raptorial about the claws of _Deinocheirus_.  They are fat, poorly
>curved, and not very tapered.  One of the most informative thing to do with
>_Deinocheirus_ claws (on the off chance you happen to have access to casts,
>which granted is a very rare thing) is to place one down next to a
>_Torvosaurus_ or similar claw.  They are very different structures.


I don't know whether the Therizinosaurs claws look raptorial or not - but
they were the the fiercest finger claws in the dinosaur world. However,
even rather fat and Deinocheirus claws ( the claw curvature is quite
evident) would have been a devastating weapon, too.
Nothing wrong with them for hunting purposes. It is interesting to note that
all these dinosaurs: Therizinosaurus, Deinocheirus and Gallimimus (armed
with three-fingered long-clawed arms) shared the same environment (Nemegt
Formation). Also the first finger in ornithomimosaurs was opposed to a
certain degree to give some grasping abilities. Deinocheirus hand was
similarly suitable for grasping. One might conclude, they were catching
something with these manipulative manus. I am not sure if Therizinosaurus
possessed the same ability.



Berislav Krzic (Kr?ic)
illustrissimus@usa.net
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