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Re: Long-necked stegosaur, head tail mimicry?
Scott Hartman wrote:
> I will point out that specialized low-browsers like
> Nigersaurus and Brachytrachelopan seemed to shed their
> excess neck length quite quickly. So perhaps a more
> enlightening question would be: Why do they shorten their
> necks, and what does it say about other sauropods who did
Some titanosaurs had rather short necks - at least by sauropod standards - such
as _Isisaurus_ and _Mendozasaurus_. Though the necks were not nearly as
truncated as found in the very short-necked _Brachytrachelopan_.
Interestingly, _Isisaurus_ was found in the Lameta Formation, which has also
yielded sauropod coprolites that indicate a diet of grass (Poaceaea) (Prasad et
al., 2005; Science 310: 1177-1180). So the shorter necks are consistent with
low browsing on grass. Then again, other coprolites have been attributed to
_Isisaurus_ that indicate a diet that contained leaves (Sharma et al., 2005;
Micropaleontol. 51: 73-82). So these titanosaurs may have not specialized on a
single plant source, with a feeding envelope that included small trees and
Speculative, I know...