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Re: Sloping terrain Re: Woman against Abelisaur




 On 7/24/2011 3:10 PM, Thomas R. Holtz, Jr. wrote:
>
> Well, to be fair, we are obligate bipeds with about the stupidest
> stance that evolution could come up with and still be successful!
> Far better balance when you have front quarters and a balancing
> tail...

 Agreed -- but one tail still does not = 2 legs.

 The biped necessarily spends time balanced on one foot. The quad can
 traverse the same ground and have three feet solidly planted at all
 times, if necessary.

That's all true, but there are yet more ways in which humans are at an unusual disadvantage. Not only do we balance our center of gravity above our hip joints, the hip joints themselves are absurdly high up because our legs are absurdly long. We look like spider monkeys (only with yet longer legs) -- for the same reason as spider monkeys.

Another factor are our extremely short toes:

 Given that the dinosaur world essentially boiled down to bipedal
 predators and quad herbivores over it's entire span, and the obvious
 negative aspects of falling down while being a mega-biped with
 teeny-tiny arms, I am surprised that the ecological implications of
 the respective dinosaur locomotion modes have not received more
 attention.

It would be that way if all else had been equal. But it wasn't. The theropods had long, somewhat spreading toes; such feet don't sink in easily, but are easy to pull out because the toes taper and can be brought together. All sauropods had compact feet and outright columnar hands that must have sunk in easily and must have created suction when pulled out.