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Re: Tyrannosaur age-population distributions




On Mon, 17 Jul 2006 12:52:48 +1000 Dann Pigdon <dannj@alphalink.com.au>
writes:
> Quoting Phillip Bigelow <bigelowp@juno.com>:
> 
> > _T. rex_ is "brainier" than crocs (and most herbivorous 
> dinosaurs), but
> > that isn't saying much.  Most of _T. rex_'s brain volume was taken 
> up by
> > the animal's sensory subsystems (olfactory lobes, and to a lesser 
> extent,
> > its optic lobes).  But for complex social interactions, a larger 
> cortex
> > is needed and _T. rex_ just doesn't measure up in that 
> Department.
> >
> 
> I think you'll find that this idea is outdated poppy-cock (if you'll 
>  
> excuse my French).
> 
> The sheer complexity of intra-species interactions such as that  
> exemplified by the ecological niche of the cleaner wrass suggests 
> that  
> brain size is not a good indication of the presence or absence of  
> complex social interactions.


Earlier, Graydon claimed that tyrannosaurs were smarter than chickens,
and used a lot of lion/wolf behavioral terminology to describe their
purported social interactions.  Since no one really knows the truth to
those claims, I used the only hard evidence available (E.Q. comparisons)
to show that the claims are pure speculation.

I misspoke when I implied that "brain-challenged" creatures don't
interact with each other in complex ways.  Indeed, when observed under a
microscope, even brainless bacteria can be seen interacting with each
other when they congregate around a food source.  Their communications
are via various biochemical cues.

I think this thread serves a useful purpose in showing that "social
complexity" doesn't necessarily imply "social consciousness".  While I
agree that tyrannosaurs were probably quite complex in their interactions
with each other (as are crocs), I also suspect that they were probably
not particularly good at playing "fetch the stick".

Regarding the concept of wolf-like or lion pride-like family units in
tyrannosaurs: We don't even know if tyrannosaur babies were altricial or
precocial.

<pb>
--
Why do chicken coops only have two doors?
Because if they had four doors, they would be chicken sedans.
(as told to me by my neighbor's son)