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RE: Built Like a Race Horse, Slow as an Elephant?



It's all well and good to try and put absolute speeds on T-rex...and the idea that the young were much faster creates some interesting speculation on possible age-based roles in pack hunting. I'm curious, however, about what we know about the speed of _prey_.

This may be more germane to earlier large theropods, but if you have to chase down sauropods for a living...you don't have to be all that fast.

I know sauropods are somewhat scarcer on the ground in the late Cretaceous, so what sort of speeds do we have for ceratopsians and duckbills? If the fastest prey species can only run at 10 miles an hour, then a 15 mph predator is basically strolling through the buffet line of life.

Come to think of it: have there been any modern-day correllation studies between predator speeds and prey speeds? Could you predict anything about one from the other? Probably not any direct deductions, but any positive results would be intriguing.

What would you term such a study?  Ecological biomechanics? ;-)

Eric
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