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RE: New Tyrannosaurus paper



On Fri, 1 Mar 2002 08:52:24   
 Thomas R. Holtz, Jr. wrote:
>> From: owner-dinosaur@usc.edu [mailto:owner-dinosaur@usc.edu]On Behalf Of
>> Steve Brusatte
>>
>> Yes, true.  A good comparison, therefore, would be the French
>> ceratosaur (is it still classified as a "ceratosaur"?)
>> _Genusaurus,_ which has whopping cnemial crests.  IIRC, there is
>> enough material known of _Genusaurus_ to complete a
>> Hutchinsonesque study.
>
>I greatly disagree: we have very little knowledge of this animal, and
>estimations of its mass (and, for that matter, the lengths of the various
>hindlimb elements!) would be so approximate as to be mere speculation.

Thanks to Dr. Holtz and Jaime for their posts setting me straight :-)  As it 
turns out, not nearly enough material is known from _Genusaurus_ to properly 
conduct a Hutchinson-like biomechanical study.  I had the paper describing 
_Genusaurus_ sitting downstairs...I should have consulted it before I posted.  
I was under the impression that more material was known, but that was my faux 
pas.

>>  I would be interested to see what the
>> estimated speeds of _Genusaurus_ (with its huge cnemial crests)
>> were, and how they compared to _Tyrannosaurus_.
>
>Interesting, yes, but one of the basic points coming out of various lines of
>research is that the mechanical world that 3 or 4 or 6 or more tonne animals
>live in is very different from the world that 100 kg or 500 kg or maybe even
>1 tonne animals live in.  (Disappointing, I know; I really didn't want to
>believe that for a long time myself...).

Oh, certainly, yes.  I would have to liken _Genusaurus_ vs. _Tyrannosaurus_ to 
insect flight vs. avian flight.  I recall discussing this with Jaime, oh, 
probably last summer.  Sure, insect flight doesn't tell much about avian flight 
per se, but looking into the evolution of insect flight can give some 
interesting insights and comparisons.  Obviously, HP Hutchinson's new study 
does give the very clear impression that the biomechanical worlds of a 
_Tyrannosaurus_ sized animal and a smaller _Genusaurus_ like animal are 
different.  But, perhaps corrolates could be made??  And, unlike Dr. Holtz, I 
don't really have a hard time believing it :-)))

>> Hopefully, this paper will lead to much similar research
>> involving all types of extinct animals.
>
>Quite!!!!

I bet everyone on the list would second this motion.  I am especially looking 
forward to HP Hutchinson's _Tyrannosaurus_ paper that he is hinting at, along 
with the results of some of his research on larger extant animals of which he 
is also hinting at!  And, I, too, would like to thank him for his posts onlist. 
 It's great when you can read the responses of the actual researcher when 
discussing a new paper or study.

Steve

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