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RE: Did Feathers Evolve for Dispaly? We Still Don't Know!

As an animal behaviorist--I can help! Apparently, their habitat is not
green all the time. Red pandas live in a habitat in the Himalayas and
where red moss and white lichens are in abundance. When the climate
grows colder, the moss and lichen flourish, helping them hide safely
from predators--their number one predator being the snow leopard. Its
long bushy tail with six alternating yellowish red transverse ochre
rings provides balance and excellent camouflage against its habitat of
moss and lichen-covered trees. They're nocturnal and crepuscular so
they're not going to be active and walking around in the brightest hours
of the day (except at zoos). 

Comparing reptiles with mammals is a little bit like comparing apples
and oranges--their coloration and habitats are very similar, though. 
Even though some animals may not look "camouflaged" they usually
are...unless they're advertising that they're poisonous!

Ashley Fragomeni
Gallery Interpreter
Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County
900 Exposition Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90007
(213) 763-3229

-----Original Message-----
From: owner-DINOSAUR@usc.edu [mailto:owner-DINOSAUR@usc.edu] On Behalf
Of Dann Pigdon
Sent: Sunday, January 31, 2010 1:49 PM
To: dinosaur@usc.edu
Subject: Re: Did Feathers Evolve for Dispaly? We Still Don't Know!

On Fri, Jan 29th, 2010 at 4:02 PM, Mickey Rowe <mickeyprowe@gmail.com>

> You [Michael Erickson] say "orange and white banded
> coloration would serve purposes of camouflage just as well".  And
> you know this how?

Such a colour scheme seems to work for red pandas.

Orange and white coat patterns are quite common in modern animals - and
although they seem to 
scream 'here I am' to us colour visioned beasties when the animals are
out in the open (especially 
against green grass), they can be surprisingly difficult to spot in any
sort of cover or dappled shade.


Dann Pigdon
GIS Specialist                         Australian Dinosaurs
Melbourne, Australia               http://home.alphalink.com.au/~dannj