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Re: Lack of Running Giant Theropod Tracks




Nov 28, 2010, at 1:49 PM, Don Ohmes wrote:

>> Try a thought experiment -- drop down on all fours and become a 
>> sauropod. Your neck is now as long as your torso, and as big around as 
>> your finger, or maybe something a little more sensitive. How big is your 
>> head? Really, really, small...

> While a thought experiment such as this may seem intuitive, 

It does not "seem intuitive". It is simple, relevant and extremely convincing. 
Care to run through a few trials? Take it out o' the thought category?

> the reality is that large vertebrate predators in modern systems rarely 
> attack 
>prey many times larger than themselves, 
>

There is no extant analogue to the vulnerabilties of the sauropod and the 
strengths of the theropod. That they evolved together is in itself convincing. 


And exceptions abound. How are macro-statistical analyses relevant?

> the observation is that size matters a great deal.  

The idea that a theropod sitting under a tree would not chomp down on a 
browsing  
sauropod head because there was this huge edible bulk *10 meters  distant* is 
weak. No other way to put it.

> In terms of surprise, I find myself personally surprised at the continued 
> focus 
>on predation of adults, given that our
> current knowledge of dinosaur reproduction strongly implies that there was a 
>vast biomass of juveniles present for
> many species.

Right. The mega-theropods were huge because they ate small agile prey. Ho-kay. 
That said, the biomass was there, apparently.