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Re: Turtles and dinosaur predators (Re: Oviraptorids as Parrots?)

On Sun, 05 Feb 2006 14:55:18 -0800 (pst), Phil Bigelow wrote
> To a tyrannosaur, chasing and eating a land tortoise is like a human
> running-down and eating a pie that is sitting on a picnic table. 
>  How did these (relatively immobile) land creatures avoid predators 
> with a bite force of over a ton per square inch?

Sam Neil wandered about the Cretaceous landscape, telling the tortoises 
to 'stand still'. :)

Seriously -- you might as well ask how ostriches ever manage to incubate 
their eggs, or how new-born gazelles don't all get found and eaten by hyenas.

Predators tend to be pretty thin on the ground, so when you're a small(ish) 
animal in a big landscape, the chances of a predator happening to cross your 
path is probably fairly small. If the prey species in question happened to 
look a lot like a rock, and spent a lot of time staying still, even a 
Tyrannosaur who's vision isn't based solely on movement (ie. almost certainly 
all of them) might not notice the tortoise.


Dann Pigdon
GIS / Archaeologist         http://heretichides.soffiles.com
Melbourne, Australia        http://www.geocities.com/dannsdinosaurs