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Since the original speculations about carrion-eating and mud-burrowing were
made, new information has become available about several mechanical features
which don't seem to be particularly compatible with that life style. Extremely
limited neck mobility is just one of several. As a typical example of other
stuff that's out of date, take a look at the photo of the front end of the
"Quetzalcoatlus species" jaw near the bottom of page 144 of Wellnhofer's
'Prehistoric Flying Reptiles'. That's not a Quetz snout; it's an inadvertent
misidentification of a tapejarid from another location a good bit further down
in the strata. Most of the Quetz paintings to date have been based on that
snout. An unfortunate 'oops'. Expect that to change in the fairly near
future. Also, several examples of the front of the Quetz crest are preserved,
and they don't look like the front of the crests in the Wellnhofer book. Take a
look at page 142-143, which also places the eye way too high. But don't take
that as a criticism of the paintings. The page 142-143 , John is a superb
artist, and I love his work. If he were to redo those paintings today, they
might well look a bit different in some of the detail.
Richard Pearce wrote:
> > For a number of reasons, Quetzalcoatlus appears most likely to have been a
> > flat-water skimmer. Though that doesn't preclude it from picking the
> > occasional
> > tidbit off the ground.
> Could you expand on that? I'm not doubting what you say, it's simply that
> most literature I've read on the subject refers to *Quetzalcoatlus* as a
> carrion-eater. It may well be that my info is out of date, so I'd be
> interested to know more about this.
> Feel free to take this offlist if you'd prefer.