[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index][Subject Index][Author Index]


----- Original Message -----
From: "Bill Hunt" <bill@huntstudios.com>
To: <ashmidt@flash.net>; <Aegyptiacus@aol.com>; <dinosaur@usc.edu>
Sent: Friday, November 01, 2002 10:58 PM

> > From: ANN SCHMIDT <ashmidt@flash.net>
> > Reply-To: ashmidt@flash.net
> > Date: Thu, 31 Oct 2002 10:53:44 -0800 (PST)
> > To: Aegyptiacus@aol.com, dinosaur@usc.edu

> > Some other surprising hybrids (sp?) you may not know about include the
> > Crocodile/American Crocodile hybrids, and even a case of a Blue Whale
(or Fin
> > Whale, I forget) crossed with a Humpback! (mentioned in "The Audobon
> > Field Guide to Marine Mammals").
> The Cuban  Crocodile/American Crocodile hybrid doesn't surprise me.  Given
> their proximity the Cuban Croc should probably be considered a subspecies
> the American Croc.

On what basis?  Aside from coloring, the Cuban Croc is smaller, and also
differs greatly in behavior and some morphology.  It is regarded as the most
terrestrial living crocodilian and I read in a very old crocodilian book
(don't remember its name, but its so old that the author didn't regard
parental care in the alligator true) that one scientists studying their jaws
and teeth found that Cuban Crocs have specialization that would have enabled
them to capture large, thick-skinned and armored prey.  No such creatures
exist on Cuba today, but the island did once have medium-sized ground
sloths.  They've even found Cuban Croc tooth marks on the bones (its been a
long time since I lasted checked this book out of the library so some of
this info might be inaccurate).

You probably didn't want to hear all that but I find it to be some
interesting tidbits.  Anyway, I beleive the cross breeding with the American
Crocodile isn't regarded as natural because it is only occurring because the
numbers of Cuban Crocs are so low that they sometimes can't find mates of
their own species, just as I'm pretty sure the different lifestyles of lions
and tigers would keep them from interbreeding if they still lived in the
same areas, when confined in zoos they have been known to breed with each

So I want to stick with the definition of species being populations that
normally don't interbreed unless confined with each other in captivity.  The
very fact that hybrids are ususally fairly rare in nature shows that the
individuals are seeking out what they regard as preferable to other
individuals of a seperate species.  Of course this can't be used on extinct
animals so you have to go with the next best thing to actual observation and
genetic studies, morphology, and make the most informed and logical guess
you can.  After all, as a general role animals that are markedly different
from each other in morphology don't interbreed, and the further they
differenciate from the others, the more likely it is IMO that they should be
regarded as different genera.

It would be nice if there was a strict definition of genus but I don't think
there ever will be, animals just don't universally fall into almost any
human-made category.

The Humpback/Fin hybrid surprises me more, considering
> the mating rituals and accompanying singing that Humpbacks engage in.
> it confirms that Humpbacks are Rorquels, albiet aberrent forms.   What
> became of the hybrid?  -  Bill

The book only mentions it in passing.  I assume either the animal was killed
by whalers (depending on the time) or simply eventually died of natural

Also, now that I've had the chance to reread the paragraph the animals
actually wasn't a Fin/Humpback hybrid but a Blue Whale and Humpback Whale
hybrid, which is even more surprising as a typical Blue is nearly twice the
length of a typical Humpback, and much heavier (a max of 400,000 pounds vs.
90,000 pounds).  The entry is as follows

Page 236-237 "Guide to Marine Mammals of the World"
"Blue Whales are known to occasionally hybridize with Fine Whales, and
unlikely as it would seem given the considerable differences in size and
morphology between the two species, there is one well-documented report of a
Humpback--Blue Whale hybrid from the South Pacific."

I for one wonder if any photos of it exist, the Bottlenose Dolphin/False
Killer Whale hybrid is interesting enough so I can hardly imagine what a
cross between a Blue and Humpback would look like.

To make this on topic, what dinosaurs are known that lived near enough to
each other and were similar enough, to have possibly occasionally interbred?

> Bill & Rebecca Hunt
> Hunt Wildlife Studios
> 119 Bierstadt Ct
> Livermore,  CO  80536
> 970-484-0894
> e-mail;  bill@huntstudios.com
> Web;  http://www.huntstudios.com
> >
> > As for Baryonyx and Suchomimus, the fact that they are both not fully
> > renders it hard to judge the differences between them doesn't it?
Hasn't it
> > even been suggested they may be the same species?