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Re: Lack of Running Giant Theropod Tracks

On 11/26/2010 7:57 PM, tholtz@geol.umd.edu wrote:
* Such big animals may not have run or run much

That makes sense -- would a big theropod have had to break out of a walk to literally walk circles around a sauropod?

Tactical implications -- 1) a sauropod faced w/ a large-jawed tall biped directly in it's path could not likely just ignore it and keep on truckin'... the long skinny neck would require some sort of rearing/turning behavior to defend.

2) carnivores generally can endure a much longer period of time w/out nutrition than a large herbivore -- this combined with the sauropod's need to protect the neck could make a 'persistence hunting' strategy highly effective on a substrate that did not impede bipedal locomotion.

It might take 2 or 3 (e.g.) allosaurids a day or two to wear down a loner sauropod, but they would not likely need to run to do it...

Seemingly ridiculous thought experiment -- put $1000 on the end of a long pole (say, 3m) -- walk down a city street. Can you protect the money w/out lifting the pole straight up in the air? No.

If you need to eat more or less constantly, how long can you hold the pole up? Perhaps a day or two?