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Re: 10/26 Science News Dino Articles: Urination, Pterosaurs, Mosasaurs,Stegos

Sean Carroll wrote:
> But can anyone think of a single instance when it is known that a long,
> dangerous, sharp set of spikes is/was used primarily for display and not
> defence?

I don't know about "long and dangerous", but the Thorny Devil (Moloch
horridus) is covered in spikes and looks like the last thing you would
want to swallow whole, yet is mostly soft to the touch. They also use
these skin structures to condense desert morning mists into water
droplets, and can actually drink just by standing in a damp patch (the
water is drawn up the body across the skin surface via capillary action
and heads straight for the corner of the mouth). So not only does it
look nasty and spikey, but the spikes also serve a practical purpose.


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