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Re: Waders and fishers



Thanks to all who have answered my question on waders and fishers.

However, I still have some comments to make:

I was aware of animals like Baryonyx, Suchomimus etc. but those rather big
dinosaurs seem to be analogues of fishing bears rather than wading birds.

> I believe in this case, that first possibility may be it.  Coelophysids,
> spinosaurids, Compsognathus, Masiakasaurus, Caudipteryx, and Archaeopteryx
> (and other basal birds) have all been suggested to have been fishers.
Thanks for this list - I was not aware that even Coelophysids have been
suggested to be fishers (and waders).

However, what I really wanted to ask was:
Are there any adaptations that suggest this?
Don't, for instance,  typical wading birds tend to have very large,
widely spreading toes? Don't fish eaters tend to have conical, unserrated
teeth?


BTW, looking at some bird pictures (e.g. the secretary bird in PDW),
I noticed that birds lower legs and upper feet seem to be much more narrow
than those of dinosaurs, at  least in restorations.
Is this an adaptation for flight (reducing weight at the end of the
appendages by putting the muscles higher up on the leg)?
Or is it an adaptation for running? In this case, however, shouldn't at
least small theropods have similarly narrow legs?
Or is it simply a matter
of scaling, as birds tend to be lighter than most theropods?
To make the question less speculative, can the leg diameter be inferred
reliably from the skeleton?

Cheers,

Martin.


                   Dr. Martin Baeker
                   Institut fuer Werkstoffe
                   Langer Kamp 8
                   38106 Braunschweig
                   Germany
                   Tel.: 00-49-531-391-3073
                   Fax   00-49-531-391-3058
                   e-mail <martin.baeker@tu-bs.de>