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Re: Waiting for a giant bird and dino physiology revisted




On Sat, 19 May 2001, Dann Pigdon wrote:

> > It is also possible that Australia supported a lower
> > density (not diversity) of carnivores, and/or that the marsupials were not
> > as clever at finding nests.
> 
> Brush-tail possums in New Zealand are only too good at finding nests in trees,
> especially those of endangered birds. I imagine thylacaleo was probably no
> dumber than a brush-tail. 

Birds have many ways to conceal their nests; but these are usually
species-specific. i.e., innate behaviors (albeit with
considerable variation).  Having no predators (fewer, at
least), NZ birds were/are naive and probably easier to find.  This is
analagous to Dodo behavior and not necessarily and indication of much
discernment on the part of possums.  I used to hunt possums in
NZ--east of Invercargill.  They are, in any case, formidable
creatures.  One of them participated in a
defining moment in my childhood--but I'm wandering off topic.