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Re: Claws on deinonychosaurs
When I think of how dromies may have used their enlarged pedal claws, I
remember a cock fight I saw years ago in which gamecocks, each having a 2"
recurved bladelike device called a gaff affixed to their feet, were placed
in a pen and allowed to fight. In those fights, the birds attacked one
another viciously and expertly with their feet. The primary killing tools
in those fights were the gaffs which they used very effectively to slash one
another to shreds, although stabbing with the beak was also used.
Incidentally, at the same time, the wings were used to aid in leaping
attacks and to fluster the opponent. Some might say this is the result of
training, but I was told that there is very little training required at all.
The birds are abused and drugged to increase their aggressiveness, but they
take naturally to using the gaffs as killing tools. All in all (absent the
abuse and drugs), this seems to me like a reasonable model for how Dromies
used their equipment.