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Re: Long-necked stegosaur coming out in Proceedings B



Tim Williams writes:
 > > "... two scenarios are possible."
 > > 
 > > "The first is that the long neck might have permitted it to
 > > browse for foliage at a height not frequented by other
 > > prehistoric animals. The second is that males and females might
 > > have found the trait appealing, so it evolved due to sexual
 > > selection.
 > 
 > I would have suggested a third possibility (not the same as
 > Dann's), which is that a longer neck would allow a better
 > 'look-out' to scour the terrain for approaching predators.
 > Interestingly, this idea is implicitly contradicted by the paper:
 > 
 > "By contrast, the long neck of _Miragaia_ incurred a survival cost
 > because it presented a greater predation target for medium to
 > large-sized theropods..."

Please.  Sauropod workers have been agonising over the functional and
evolutionary implications of long necks for decades -- surely these
arriviste stegosaur people don't think they're going to work it out
overnight?  :-)

 _/|_    ___________________________________________________________________
/o ) \/  Mike Taylor    <mike@indexdata.com>    http://www.miketaylor.org.uk
)_v__/\  "It takes a certain kind of bad writer to write badly sincerely"
         -- Richard Sherbaniuk.