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Re: Microraptor ate birds
--- On Thu, 11/10/11, Denver Fowler <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
> Falcons are avivores, but they strike in the air, or from the
> air to the ground;
> Accipitrids tend to catch their prey by surprise... on the
> ground. Are there many mammalian predators that actively hunt
> in trees?
>Plus, what does microraptor do once it has caught it's prey?
> What is the method of dispatch in a tree?
>>I mean, this is /behaviour/ damnit, always great when any of
>> that can be elucidated, even if it doesn't have 100% support.
> It's not behaviour: it's diet. For all we know, the Microraptor
> might have found a dead bird on the ground.
The evidence is that it could glide, but certainly could not partake in powered
The evidence is that it ate stuff that lived in/near trees.
A *plausible* explanation is that it climbed trees, and then used its height to
execute an aerial attack on its prey to take its prey by surprise.
I often see hawks perched in trees when the soaring weather is no good,
seemingly waiting to ambush any unaware ground squirrels. I've seen it work at
least once, so it seems it could possibly be a viable strategy for something
below the threshold for powered flight.
Regarding behavior, eating the bird is a behavior. That doesn't tell us it
hunted the bird, but it still tells us something about what it did.
(Diet tells us something about behavior)