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Re: cause of Gigantism in sauropods




On Thu, 10 Feb 2011, Habib, Michael wrote:
On Feb 10, 2011, at 2:16 PM, Don Ohmes wrote:

On 2/10/2011 12:34 PM, Raptorial Talon wrote:
[...]
There's the rub, though - I was just looking at some large theropod specimens today, along with an adult Apatosaurus louisae (the holotype, actually). Even if the teeth are imbedded all the way to their base, it's not altogether clear if they'd get deep enough to hit the primary vessels. The vertebral aa. are encased in bone, and the carotids were probably located in a ventral location and encased in a carotid groove (as in birds) surrounded by muscle. Veins might be in the line of fire, but the pressure in the veins would not be that excessive; the blood is basically just dripping back via gravitational acceleration at that point, minus the resistance of the vessel walls. The idea of a bite to the neck may seem intuitively catastrophic, but a number of thick-necked vertebrates use them as weapons (giraffes and pinnipeds for example). That's anecdotal, but I think we need to be careful not to assume that a

What about the windpipe and suffocation?

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