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Re: Comparing T-rex to pterosaurs was (Re: pterosaur tracks from SVP)

Betty Cunningham writes,

>One note of interest from the talk -they couldn't get a rhemphoryncinoid
>of any type to walk succesfully in ANY of the 3 postures, only
>The long tail was a problem in ALL postures they've tried.

Do rhemphoryncinoids have an obviously different skeletal structure from what 
we find in the pterodactyls?  Yes, I am not forgetting the tail (d'oh  :^).  I 
was more concerned about there being any differences besides the tail?

If the answer is yes, then we may have to accept that the older model is the 
correct one.  If rhemphoryncinoids cannot be made to be adequately mobile on 
the ground, then perhaps they did have a bat-like lifestyle.  As much as I 
would like to have a rhemphoryncinoid that scampers like a small bird, or a 
modified squirrel, if the skeleton will not allow it, then I need to look for a 
more plausible solution.

If the answer is no, then we may have our work cut out for us.  That is, unless 
we can demonstrate that the pterodactyls are operating under a different 
lifestyle.  Perhaps the selection pressure that favored a reduced tail was the 
same one that favored ground mobility.

Your move.

Rob Meyerson

Politicians and diapers have one thing in common. They should both be changed 
regularly and for the same reason.