> 1. Is there really evidence that
Megatherium and its relatives scavenged flesh occasionally?
None that I
have heard of (and I would not consider the jaws or teeth of sloths to be
particularly well suited for dealing with meat). Also, neither of the
living sloths (which bracket at least some of the "ground sloths"
phylogenetically, although I'm not certain of the position of megatheriids)
are meat scavengers, as far as I know.
Some armadillos do scavenge at times.
Maybe they jumbled the xenarthrans...
Farina's model of the predatory
> 2. If Basilosaurus used its legs
as claspers why do modern whales not require them?
modern whales are much smoother operators... Okay, modern whales
demonstate that claspers are not necessary, but it is true that
Basilosaurus still had small hindlimbs with apparently functional
joints. I don't know of any reason why they might not be used for this
purpose, and various other marine vertebrates have various pelvic
claspers. However, there is no direct evidence that they were used in
procedure takes today's killer whales about 2 hours according to, er, the
TV. Some sort of clasper is certainly an advantage in that situation (though
probably a disadvantage in swimming and useless most of the year, which
apparently adds up to a selective