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Don Ohmes <email@example.com> wrote:
>> I'm convinced that the forelimbs of alvarezsaurids were used for
>> *something*, and that *something* was associated with diet.
> As anyone who has done any digging knows, teeny little arms poking out of
> your chest are NOT the tools you need, as Jason and several others point
> out, especially when range of movement is limited.
Personally, I'm cold on the digging hypothesis - especially as applied
to termite-mounds or trees. One can support the hypothesis that
alvarezsaur forelimbs retained a trophic function, without necessarily
involving ant-eating habits.
I like the idea that the single-clawed forelimbs of alvarezsaurs were
used to penetrate carcasses (especially from the inside), or that they
were used to prise parasites off hides - either from the hides of
other species, or from each other (as a grooming tool). Thus
returning us to the origin of this thread: Dino-lice.