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Re: Ungulate-Type Nuchal Ligaments in Hadrosaurs?
In a message dated 1/24/00 7:53:15 AM, Jonathan R. Wagner wrote:
<< assuming a feeding posture with the elbows bent, feeding nearly at ground
level, any ungulate-like nuchal ligaments would have to stretch to nearly
twice their length in order to allow such a range of movement.
Another possibility is that hadrosaurs did not hold their heads so
upright. This seems less plausable on the grounds that it is best to keep the
head elevated in "travel mode" or for defense. However, we cannot simply
assume that this was necessary...>>
Good non-assumption. Without any data to back it up, it seems to me that
ungulates and hadrosaurs differ most critically in posture. Lacking the
hadrosaur's ability to stand on two legs, ungulates have more need to hold
their heads as high as possible when looking for predators. Hence a need for
the ligaments in ungulates, but not in hadrosaurs which could get their heads
way up without craning their necks at all, by going bipedal.
Maybe you should consider the neck of the kangaroo, which has a similar
grazing/rearing postural situation.
- Tom Hopp