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Re: Spinosaurs as what?
I was never a big follower of the "Spinosaurs are
fish-eaters" hypotheses. As Suess et al have pointed
out. They really don't show too many fish eating
adaptations. I kind of viewed the lot as being snatch
hunters (no gutter humour) in line with the more broad
snouted crocodylians (though not quite as violent).
The way I figure it, spinosaurs would stalk the savannah, or rain forest, or
woodlands, or whatever the environment was and scare up whichever animal of
appropriate size was hiding in the bushes or crusing along unaware, snatch
it up, give it a couple of turns over the symphyseal tooth rosette and then
swallow it whole or in big chunks. I won't say they didn't eat fish but it's
clear (or at least I'm pretty convinced) that they were more generalists
than anything else.
What would be really nice, would be if someone would
do a study on the role of sails in extant animals
(_Chamaeleo montium_, _Basiliscus_, _Hydrosaurus_).
Admittedly, all these examples are smaller than the
dinosaurs in question (but then, few things weren't).
_Chamaeleo montium_; Sexual dimorphism, the female hasn't horns or sail.
_Basiliscus_; The same as the two-horned chameleon.
_Hydrosaurus_; Idem. http://www.angelfire.com/biz/portagelagoon/sfcs.html
I won't say that the sail in these lizards hasn't other functions but being
that only the male has the structure it's hard not to consider it so.
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