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Re: Velociraptor profiles

On Mon, 25 Mar 2002, John Conway wrote:

> > On Fri, 22 Mar 2002, Jerzy Dyczkowski wrote:
> >
> >>> - claw marks on Protoceratops skull and ribs. If Velociraptor claw was
> >>> killing weapon, and Velociraptor was fighting it's claws should leave
> >>> marks on bone. Less likely, if it was grasping the carcass.
> If the Velociraptor and Proto had had only been struggling for a moment,
> then the Protoceratops may have not incurred any other injuries (other
> than the neck). On the other hand, if the Proto was a scavenged carcass,
> then it should have scratches all over it. So if the the skeleton has
> extensive tooth/claw marks, then I think that lends weight to the idea
> that it was already dead, not alive.

I suppose nobody looked for these marks. I still think it would be
possible to distinguish between the two. If P grabbed V hand, V would
naturally attack P head and neck frill - not good places to bite if it was
scavenging. Long gooves through the ribcage made by claw would be
different from tooth marks made by scavenger etc.

> Again, if they had only been struggling a moment, then such scratches
> may not be present.

Yes, but who wants to check?

> I agree. Though I can't for the life of me figure out how it would be
> preserved in a standing position, perhaps you have some ideas?

There may be different outcomes, depending from how violent sandflow was,
how dense was the sand, did conditins change (for example animals were
swept some distance), were they still alive or dead (if they were
fighting). I suppose few people ever saw such a catastrophe and have any
idea on how it looks like...

It could be a sudden, movie-style running wall of sand. Then both
creatures would be pushed and perhaps knocked out if still alive. Position
of carcasses could look very suggestive, but perhaps would be artifical,
except of hand stuck dead in Proto mouth.

If it was gradually rising thick sand, creatures might first get stuck
like in concrete and (live) Proto could well be in standing position.
If proto was dead and V alive, V would perhaps manage to climb on it.

If sand was loose, or moved, animals could make movements similar to
swimming or floating or wriggling around for some time. Then live V would
grasp carcass trying to climb on it or cling to it - if it still was
alive. Maybe V tried to separate from carcass on the last moment, or
moved in it's dead throes. If both were already dead, their bodies would
be like swimming or floating - again not dissimilar to what we see etc.