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Re: How to Build a Pterosaur



The only real evidence for sizing large azhdarchoid necks would be allometric comparisons using the Hatz occiput and humerus, combined with the Qn humerus and Arambourgiana cervical vertebra, and since it isn't really known whether the Aramb vertebra is CV4 or CV5, it leaves some room for doubt about neck length (also, Aramb appears to be maybe about 10% smaller in linear dimensions than Qn or Hatz and has a relatively gracile CV). So that leaves quite a bit of uncertainty in the lengths of the necks of the really big critters. That said, based on the neck of Qsp, the single Aramb CV, and the Hatz and Qn maeterials, I'd guess the probable neck length to be about 3 meters for an azhdarchoid with 10 meter span. Mark's neck looks to be roughly about 50-60% of that length, but I think it is quite possible that some of the big guys could have had very short necks, so I don't believe one could say that Mark is wrong about the neck length for his particular animal (I don't know which species he is emulating). Personally, I restore Qn with an 11 meter span (don't see how to shorten it to 10 meters without throwing away some of the preserved material :-), and with a 3 meter neck and 2.4 meter head, and I also restore torsos with a lot less volume than Mark. -- but, I think there's quite a margin for variation available, and I admire what he is doing.

What I'm curious about, is -- is he going to make one or more of the replicas flightworthy? (Mark, I encourage you to do so, if that's not already in your plans)
JimC

----- Original Message ----- From: "Mike Taylor" <mike@indexdata.com>
To: <tholtz@umd.edu>
Cc: <VRTPALEO@usc.edu>; "Dinosaur Mailing List" <dinosaur@usc.edu>
Sent: Tuesday, August 18, 2009 6:53 AM
Subject: Re: How to Build a Pterosaur


The truly shocking thing about the second photo on that page is: the
neck is not long enough.  Not by a long way.  (I don't dare tell Mark,
though.)