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Re: Re.:Deinonychus critique ? A COUPLE OF COMMENTS...
'SCHMIDT' said and asked, "Wow! I didn't know any potential dromeosaur
tracks had been found. Is
there a place on the Net with pictures of them?
While I have found seven Early Cretaceous examples of extremely similar
tracks in diverse substrates that seem only to be explainable if a
dromeosaurid made them, no images are available on the web. One example is
of two successive steps (left, then right). Because the substrates were
soft, in the best of them evidence of the 'terrible claw' (literal
interpretation of the name, Deinonychus) virtually shouts at the observer.
Because of their scientific importance, I have been advised by
professional scientists (which I am not) to sequester images of them until
they can be carefully described and published in some scientific journal.
Also, there is the new one from the Late Cretaceous, that differs in
some interesting ways (partially described last week on the DML) from the
Early Cretaceous ones.
Understand that I certainly wouldn't want to assert that there is
absolute proof that they are dromeosaurid tracks, that would be ridiculous.
But to me and a good percentage of other knowledgeable persons who have seen
them, the best ones are almost as close to proof beyond a reasonable doubt
as one could likely have, short of a long trackway and maybe a dead
dromeosaurid at the end of it. Although I have sought any alternative
explanatory hypothesis to account for their origin, no one who has seen them
has offered one. I usually ask those to whom they are shown if they have a
Finally, analytically it is important that these tracks were produced in
soft substrates and resultantly show distinct and rather startling traces of
the effect of a very different, 'killer' type claw on digit II. Otherwise,
we might only have two-toed tracks that a 'devil's advocate' might assert
are the result of passage of an ostrich type foot (or feet), or by a
deformed foot, and, thus, tracks not so positively attributable to a
dromeosaurid. The 'killer claw' very possibly might not have touched the
ground in a substantially firmer substrate. So, if one wants diagnostic
dromeosaurid tracks and/or trackway, those tracks might just have to have
been made in a soft substrate.
Once properly published, I will see that images of the tracks discussed
in the paper are available somewhere on the web. Maybe some person more
knowledgeable than am I could help me get up 3-D moveable images, so it will
be more like handling these interesting specimens personally. Often the
view of the bottom side of the substrate is just as interesting (if not more
so) than that from the top. :-o
"You know my method. It is founded upon the observance of trifles." --
Sherlock Holmes in The Boscombe Valley Mystery