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Re: Oviraptorosaur tail forms and functions



Augusto Haro wrote, truncatedly:

Nice hypothesis Tim: although  fused distal tail vertebrae and thick
> caudal musculature are not independently indicators of tail clubbing,
> together they seem to suggest it. I have some problems, though:
>
> -Tail shortening of the kind seen in these oviraptorosaurs is not
> what I would expect in an animal using the tail as defense. -Animals
> using tails to hit are generally not as long-legged or obligate
> bipeds as oviraptorosaurs, probably for the sake of stability while
> delivering the blow. These things apply not only to glyptodonts and
> ankylosaurs, but also to less specialized large lizards and
> crocodiles.
>
> For something more specialized than a croc at tail hitting, I think
> some transverse widening should be expected at the tail tip.
>
> I think a pygostyle may alternatively represent a way to strenghten
> the delicate small distal tail vertebrae when tail shortening put
> these closer to the base of the tail, at which stronger forces occur
> and may be transmitted to the tip by connective tissues.