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Re: sauropod facultative sprawl?



On 9/28/2011 10:05 AM, James Farlow wrote:

Farlow:  Something that MAY/may NOT be related to this, but I mention in case 
it might be, is that many--but by no means all--sauropod trackways have 
forefoot (manus) prints of the left and right sides of the trackway whose 
centers  are routinely placed farther away from the trackway midline than are 
the centers of hindfoot (pes) tracks. There is more than one possible 
explanation for this, but one might be that the forelimbs of these animals were 
more flexed at the elbow than in sauropods with different trackway patterns.

Possibly a sexual dimorphism -- if sauropods mated via in the "usual" rear-mount position, the male may have needed extra lateral (relative to long axis) flexibility in the forelimbs and/or wider spacing between the forelimbs to straddle the female.