[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index][Subject Index][Author Index]

RE: Terrestriality is a bias continued





>Why must theropods be put through a more rigorous testing than other
>animals?  Terrestrial bias is why.

>>Forget about bias.  Rather, examine your own bias toward arboreal
theropods.
  What is compelling you to decide they are arboreal?  If the majority of
paleontologists are being led blindly toward terrestrial theropods, then,
dammit, show us what you have.  Do you have something interesting we should
know about the joint structure?  Have there been studies examining theropod
remains and their taphonomy and sedimentology that suggests they are dying
in forested areas?  If you are not correct, what evidence would suggest
this?  If the majority hypothesis on terrestrial theropods is incorrect, how
would you go about empirically showing it?  Are you presenting something at
SVP or elsewhere where we may be able to see you present this info?  I
seriously want to know and understand how a theropod could be arboreal and
how the problem could be approached.  Show us what you got.<<

Forget about he bias? Then I wouldn't have anything to argue about :>.  It's
being worked on. I don't have time to do all what I want to do and I have a
big deadline on a big project that I'm working on. I mainly want for now, is
for people to realize the possibility and a very real one IMHO.


>             There is a preconceived notion on what an early bird would
>look
>like.

>>What is that notion?<<

A modern bird.

>But when one is found in the Late Triassic it is considered to be a
>composite because it doesn't fit that preconceived notion.

>>Or, the people who have looked at it disagree with Chatterjee because it
is
not clear what he has.  Chatterjee is making a very thought-provoking and
fascinating conclusion about bird evolution.  Therefore, we need very good,
clear evidence of this is many paleontologists are to be convinced that
Chatterjee's hypothesis holds water.<<
We'll just have to see about that one.

>I've talked to
>Sanker and the person who excavated _Protavis_. I believe them that it is
>just one genus in the block. I bet even if a totally intact, articulated
>specimen, it will still be thought of as a composite animal.

>>Now this is no fair and not true, Tracy.  Many people would interested in
seeing a totally intact Protoavis animal because of what it would mean.<<
New site, new possibilities, and that's all I can say about that.

>             The opposite is true for _Rahonavis_. It is a long tailed bird
>that is older than Archaeopteryx. Some believe that this is a composite
>animal. With the bird_Vorona_ and a theropod. There are three reasons why
>this is wrong. 1). The _Vorona_ is two big for _Rahonavis_ arms. 2). There
>is a sauropod skeleton in between the two and most importantly _Vorona_ is
>from a lower bedding plain. There were long tailed birds in the Mesozoic,
>but since they do not fit the idea of a bird, then it is considered to be a
>composite. Just because the animal doesn't fit a preconceived notion
>doesn't
>mean it is a composite. Trees are a niche that was filled and it should be
>considered.

>>Trees are niche and that niche was probably filled, but was it filled with
theropods?  Again, back to the empirical evidence I'm afraid.<
And the bias will make this difficult. Theropods have to go through a lot of
tests before it'll be believed that they could as I said before.


>There are some things that Bakker says that I disagree
>with, but this I think he may be right. Also _Protoceratops_ is now
>considered by a few to have been a burrower. Just because Bakker says it
>doesn't mean that we should just dismiss it.

Okay, but WHY do people feel Protoceratops may have been a burrower.  It's a
start -- it's an hypothesis.  Where do we go from there to test it?  Does
Protoceratops have large elbows to attach huge triceps mucles to help it
dig?  Could it's head shield push aside sand well?  Could an animal like
Protoceratops dig a solid burrow in sand?  Again, WHY not WHO said it.

I can't say much, other than I've made comments about it in one of my
Prehistoric Times article and in an up and coming Dinosaur World article.
It's being worked on and I don't want to blow the whistle for them.

>              So there were niches during the Mesozoic that was filled, in
>trees and in the ground, that needs to be thought about and not forgotten.
>Just because an animal doesn't fit a preconceived notion, it doesn't mean
>that it is a composite. We need to have a more open mind for what animals
>could have done.

>>And we need a more open mind about how to test these things. And ask
yourself, "Am I being fair in my appraisal of this fossil animal as an
arboreal creature?  How could I be wrong?  How would I test for this?"  It
is all too easy to commit ad-homnium (attack your opponent and not the merit
of his/her ideas).  We should all be less concerned with WHO said it than
what the evidence is for a particular scenario.  I want to know WHY, not
WHO.<<
It would work well that way but it doesn't work that way with people. Why
must theropods be put through such a rigorous tests? More than other animals
for climbing trees? Tests, tests tests...
Tracy