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RE: Complete juvenile theropod unveiled in Germany






> Date: Thu, 13 Oct 2011 21:39:53 -0700
> From: saint_abyssal@yahoo.com
> To: dinosaur@usc.edu
> Subject: Re: Complete juvenile theropod unveiled in Germany
> 
> The possibility that many of our small "coelurosaurs" are actually juveniles 
> of larger non-coelurosaur taxa certainly bolsters Horner's claims that 
> paleontology's current view of dinosaur biodiversity is grossly over-inflated 
> by ontogenetic stages misidentified as distinct taxa. I think I remember 
> David Unwin's pterosaur book describing pterosaur ecosystems as having low 
> taxonomic diversity because juveniles occupied the ecological niches that 
> would otherwise be taken by distinct small species. Maybe theropods had a 
> similar life cycle. Tyrannosaur ontogeny supports the general idea; young 
> tyrannosaurs had sharper more blade-like teeth and more cursorial body types 
> than adult suggesting different prey preferences and therefore different 
> niches. That's not suggesting, of course, that all small theropods were just 
> juveniles of some larger form, 
 
 Is it possible that both views are in fact correct (at least for areas which 
were not at the time resource-poor), and while juvenile theropods held 
different niches from their adult relatives, the juveniles held the same niches 
as smaller species?  (possibly hunting cooperatively with them, which would 
provide the protection of a pack from predators wanting to munch on them)
 
At this hour of night, the only example* for it  that springs to mind is if, 
for instance, young T.rex hunted alongside Nanotyrannus until they were big 
enough to hang out with the other T.rexes.
 
 
 
* = which bears in mind fossil ages and localities...the only other theropods I 
can think of at this hour are Giganotosaurus and Baronyx.
 
>