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Re: Fwd: Protoceratopsoid tails adapted for swimming

or to live in a desert....yes, I will keep harping on this.

On 4 December 2013 21:54, Dann Pigdon <dannj@alphalink.com.au> wrote:
> On Wed, Dec 4th, 2013 at 10:29 PM, Michael OSullivan 
> <michael.osullivan@port.ac.uk> wrote:
>> Not the first time this idea has been put forward for neoceratopsians
>> or any animal with high neural spines on the tail. However, apart from
>> the, to me, fairly obvious lack of aquatic adaptation in the body
>> (I've heard the hippo argument  for ceratopsians a couple of times
>> before but yet to see any major support for this) the environmental
>> considerations strongly argue against this that three of these taxa
>> come from a desert environment. It is extremely unlikely that
>> herbivores/omnivores which occupy a desert are going to possess strong
>> aquatic adaptations.
> Hippos can't actually swim. They move through the water by walking across the 
> bottom. Their solid
> limb bones give them no bouyancy whatsoever, so they tend to drown if stuck 
> in deep water they
> can't walk out of.  When you see what looks like a hippo bobbing in the water 
> with its head visible
> at the surface, it's actually sitting dog-like on the bottom of fairly 
> shallow water.
> If protoceratopsoids were filling a similar niche to that of modern hippos, 
> they wouldn't have
> needed flattened tails. Or indeed tails at all.
> --
> _____________________________________________________________
> Dann Pigdon
> Spatial Data Analyst               Australian Dinosaurs
> Melbourne, Australia               http://home.alphalink.com.au/~dannj
> _____________________________________________________________

Michael O'Sullivan

Palaeobiology Research Group
Postgraduate Student
School of Earth & Environmental Sciences
Burnaby Building
Burnaby Road