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Re: Fw: Sauropod Necks As Weapons

Adam Britton wrote:
> Crocs can deliver a nasty blow with the tail, which isn't surprising giving
> the musculature behind it. However, rather than using the tail in isolation
> as an iguana or monitor might do, the crocodile lashes out with its head as
> well as the tail in the direction of the threat / annoyance - perhaps as a
> way to maintain balance. It's often said that crocs use their tails as
> weapons to unbalance prey, but perhaps such observers are concentrating on
> the wrong end of the animal.

Not necessarily. I have it on good authority from croc-wise people in
Queensland, Australia, that some crocs have adapted to taking livestock
much larger than they can pull into the water with their jaws alone by
sweeping their legs out from under them using their tails. Once in the
water, the horse or cow is at a distinct disadvantage, and may even
drown through panick alone. 

Of course crocs also use their tail in other food procurement
strategies, such as corralling fish into the shallows to make them
easier to catch, so the idea is not so far-fetched (considering that
people have actually seen it happen, as well).

Crocs are nothing if not adaptable.


Dann Pigdon                   Australian Dinosaurs:
GIS / Archaeologist         http://www.geocities.com/dannsdinosaurs
Melbourne, Australia        http://www.alphalink.com.au/~dannj/