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Re: New findings Support Spinosaurus Sail as thermal regulator (My own theory)

On Sun, Sep 14th, 2014 at 12:14 PM, Vlad Petnicki <bucketfoot-al@justice.com> 

> I'll throw something out to the professional scientists out there that dawned 
> on me today:
> The sail could not only have been added ballast, it may indeed have served a 
> heat regulatory
> purpose. I think this is doubly likely since the new findings establish that 
> it was skin covered
> rather than a hump - the easier to warm the blood that courses through the 
> vessels just under the
> skin.
> Think about this: Crocs need to get out of the water to sun themselves (yes, 
> I KNOW that
> Spinosaurus was most likely NOT (as) cold-blooded as Crocs are), but 
> regardless of how
> "warm-blooded" it was, if the water ever got too cold, the swimming/wading 
> Spinosaurus could 
> turn the sail towards the sun - and voila - thermal regulation that does not 
> require it to leave
> the water.

The problem with thermoregulatory explanations for dorsal sails is that often 
there were closely 
related species living in the same part of the world at the same time that 
lacked them completely. 
Large dorsal sails tend to be extremely rare amongst dinosaurs in general, and 
when they do occur 
it's usually in a species that is far from representative of their particular 
group (Ouranosaurus, 
Armargasaurus, Spinosaurus, etc).

The various sizes and shapes of dorsal sails amongst the spinosauridae might 
suggest that species 
recognition was their main purpose. Spending a lot of time wading in deep water 
might have 
obscured other clues, such as differences in colouration or bodily proportions. 
Dorsal sails of 
different sizes and shapes (and perhaps colours) that stuck out of the water 
might have helped to 
advertise what species animals belonged to, allowing them to easily tell a 
potental ally (or mate) 
from a competitor.


Dann Pigdon
Spatial Data Analyst               Australian Dinosaurs
Melbourne, Australia               http://home.alphalink.com.au/~dannj