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Re: Dilophosaurus Forelimb Bone Maladies

On Fri, Mar 4th, 2016 at 5:56 AM, Mike Habib <biologyinmotion@gmail.com> wrote:

> A two ton predator would have to be suicidal to take on a 20 ton animal.

That depends on what you mean by 'take on'. A direct assault on a healthy 
animal is unlikely to 
succeed, but a loud and ferocious bluff might be enough to panic a sauropod 
into stumbling and 
injuring itself, turning it's own mass against it. 

A sauropod with a severely injured leg is unlikely to survive for long, 
especially if it's left lying on its 
side and unable to right itself, leading to the sort of complications that 
large beached whales fall prey 
to (breathing difficulties, internal injuries). Even a sauropod with a slight 
limp may be doomed if it 
can't forage effectively enough. It would require a very patient predator to 
follow it around until it was 
too weak to effectively fight back though.

I often wonder whether sauropods ever dared to drink water directly from rivers 
or waterbodies, given 
the size of some of the crocodilians about during the Mesozoic. A drinking 
sauropod would seem to 
present an easily killed target if it presented its head in a convenient 
position to be swiftly 
decapitated. Perhaps there's a reason why we find so many headless sauropod 
fossils. :-)


Dann Pigdon
Spatial Data Analyst               Australian Dinosaurs
Melbourne, Australia