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Re: the bipedal ptero-challenge
email@example.com wrote :
>> Of course during take off they'd have to be bipedal for a short period,
They can't flap their wings if they walk on their knockles, IMHO, even if they
do not or walk on hinlimbs, that's why.
Then you added :
> Both types of Quetzalcoatlus appear to have been capable of
> launching from flat ground without running in a dead calm, and >would still
> be capable of doing so in today's atmosphere. The >technique is rather neat,
> very efficient, within their ability to >generate power (a flapping launch
> isn't), and doesn't involve >bipedalism or initial mandatory flapping.
To which HP Mike Taylor added :
>Wow. You've done a great build-up job on this Mystery Technique. >Are you
>going to tell us what it is? :-)
I'd like to know as well ;-)
OTOH, modern big fliers like condors or albatroses (BTW, is there any
indication that the former take off from the ground sometimes or do they always
do it while perched, like Fantasia's *Pteranodon*?) have powerfull and
relatively immense wings compared to body size. I do know that the latter
cannot take off without a bit (a lot?) of running while flapping their wings.
And it's even worse for landing. Birds are not pterosaurs, true, and birds are
bipedal. The only aspect I take into account, here, is the size. Even if *Q.*
was light as can be for such a big animal, I can't see a 12-15m of span animal
just crouching on all fours and suddenly take off with a jump. The wings must
have been quite heavy and producing a lot of drag.
Another possibility is that those big guys were taking off from cliffs, by
diving. Still doesn't make them bipedal for me, as I stated before.
My simple thoughts