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marginal differences




On Wednesday, September 24, 2003, at 12:12 AM, Mike Taylor wrote:


Hi Peter,

First of all, all HP Carpenter said is that it's not been shown that
_Triceratops_ lived in herds; that's very different from saying that
it _has_ been shown that it did _not_ live in herds.  So we are flying
in zero visibility here.  One good strategy might be to bail out :-)

Beyond that -- if _Triceratops_ was indeed solitary -- there is no
possible way to tell _why_ it should be so and _Centrosaurus_ social.
Why are tigers solitary and lions social?

Hi Mike - funnily enough, I considered that very fact...not that it did me much good. But is it known if Monos were plains dwellers, whereas Trikes were forest fanciers?


Apart from the relative size of the animals & their frill/horn
configurations, what really were the differences among the
ceratopsians?

Differences are surprisingly few. Advanced ceratopians (ceratopsids) fall into two groups: Centrosaurinae and Chasmosaurinae (=Ceratopsinae). My understanding is that its pretty much impossible to tell apart one centrosaur from another from postcranial remains,

So if it's just a head thing, does this mean they are possibly all of the same genus, if not species? Could at least some of the variation just be individuation? I mean, people exhibit vastly differing heads, yet we're all the same type of critter.


Have Ceratopsinae perhaps been overclassified?

Thanks Mike~
Peter