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RE: Russian Dinosaurs in T.O.: Longisquama



At 15.04 18/03/02 -0600, you wrote:
Silvio Renesto wrote:

> IMHO display either for mating or for threatening of potential
> predators is probably the best interpretation for the elongate
> appendages of Longisquama.

Methinks the feather-like appendages might have been used to tickle the
noses of potential predators.  As the watery-eyed predator hauled back for a
sneeze, the _Longisquama_ made its getaway.

Tickling to make the predator sneezing has been already suggested for Shortisquama last April 1st by H. Potter ;-) ;-) ;-)

Maybe I had not explained myself correctly. I meant "scaring" or "puzzling" the attacker, something like the Natrix natrix defensive behaviour, which turns suddenly belly up and looks like dead, or Phrynosoma which throws blood drops against the potential attacker. More similarly the spiny "beard" of Amphibolurus or the frill of Chlamydosaurus, in these cases it is a device that probably was well suited both for mating purposes and for scaring off (not too big) predators. If they were brightly coloured, a sudden opening in a fan like fashion would have "confused" a potential attacker modifying the outline of the body. It is rather a common strategy. IF Longisquama was arboreal (as suggested, for instance, by its forelimb and pectoral girdle) it was relatively safe from bigger predators (perhaps?) and thus this behaviour might have been at least feasible.

I agree with you completely about the lack of substantiated evidence in Haubold and Buffetaut paper. You described perfectly the flaws of the paper.
Cheers,


                                                Silvio



_
"The Wise Man is like a bamboo tree;
                simple, upright, and useful, but hollow inside"

                                                Lao Tzu

Silvio Renesto

Dipartimento di Scienze della Terra
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