[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index][Subject Index][Author Index]

sauropods: homotherm,heterotherm or gigantotherm?



Considering the enormous size of the largest sauropods and their food requirements, what kind of metabolism is currently thought to have been the one posessed by them?

Homothermy would seem allmost impossible to me. How could an animal as large as a Seismosaurus have met its food requirements for one day within that very same day? And it is not like there was only Seismosaurus feeding,but numerous sauropods seem to have coexisted at any given time which means ecosystems would have to provide enormous quantities of food at once.

Heterotherm seems like an option,due to the lower food requirements,but aren't dinosaurs thought to exhibit homothermy or near-homothermy as a plesiomorphic feature? Do naked mole rats and ,possibly,crocodiles count as heterotherms descended from homotherms?

Then I remember there being a theory about sauropods being gigantotherm,meaning that they maintained their body temperature by means of their size and the warmth that automatically makes them keep,allowing them to lead active,homotherm lives,without being homotherm themselves and they would also circumvent the problem of the food requirements,of course. But I do not believe there are analogs for something like that. Also,wouldn't it mean that younger or smaller sauropods (Magyarasaurus for example) had a metabolism they could not rely on?

In short,what's the present consensus about sauropod metabolism?

Brian