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Third claw for climbing was Re: Pro(to)avis





On Fri, 16 Sep 2005, Tim Williams wrote:

One curious aspect of avian evolution (at least, curious to me) is that the shortening of the tail and development of a pygostyle occurred in birds that had rather long legs (e.g.,_Sinornis_). I think one of Gatesy's papers discusses this too. So early ornithothoracine birds dispensed with the tip fan, but kept their "primitive" theropod legs.

Just a question: how helpful could be enlarged third claws of some theropods during climbing tree trunks?


It occured to me that some maniraptorians with enlarged claw on legs were rather slim animals, not build for wrestling big prey. And it was first answer which came to my mind.

J.