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Re: Vulture warm up



No, I don't think we can make that assumption -- according to the photos, they are also doing it on cloudy days without much radiant heat input available to them. Perhaps they are doing it to cool off ? After all, folded wings do make pretty good insulators and can trap a lot of body heat.
JimC
----- Original Message ----- From: <quailspg@frii.com>
To: <dinosaur@usc.edu>
Sent: Wednesday, May 06, 2009 3:24 PM
Subject: Vulture warm up



Listers --

Here are some very nifty pix taken very recently by a friend of a friend
in Fort Collins, Colorado.

http://picasaweb.google.com/heidemom/Vultures?authkey=Gv1sRgCNuQpdaq8qHu6wE&feat=directlink

They were taken in the morning, so can we assume the birds had their wings
spread to warm up? If this is so, what does it say about a vulture's
ability to regulate its body temp? (I don't think many other types of
birds engage in this behavior.) Does this behavior (the urge -- or need --
to warm up in the sun) say anything about your typical Mesozoic theropod?
Or are vultures a special case due to their scavenging habits (especially
low metabolism, maybe???)?

-- Donna Braginetz