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Re: Alvarezsaur spurs (was Re: dino-lice)

Augusto Haro <augustoharo@gmail.com> wrote:

> I never heard of the term cursorial not being applied to animals
> because they are not active during winter. I would certainly label it
> as cursorial because of its limbs proportions, very similar to those
> of other hyenids and canids.

Sorry Augusto - I didn't intend to refute your suggestion that the
aardwolf is cursorial.  However, the alvarezsaur anatomy doesn't fit
with the notion that it had a particularly aardwolf-like ecology, and
lurked in a burrow much of the time when its preferred food (termites)
became scarce.  To me, the aardwolf analogy for alvarezsaurs extends
mainly to two aspects: evolution from within a clade of devout
carnivores (Carnivora, Theropoda); and the ability to take in food
items other than just ants or termites (which, as David said, is a
characteristic of many myrmecophagous mammals - it's all a matter of