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Re: bipedal lunges

Chris Campbell writes;
>John Clavin (Digital) wrote:
>> The only time I can see rising on the hind legs to be useful is in
>> driving the horns into an opponent at the end of a charge, when momentum
>> would likely force both protagonists to rise up.
>I think that's mainly how it would be used; wasn't that the original
>argument?  I get the impression that they'd be operating in much the
>same manner as bighorn sheep, only against opponents as opposed to

I have to disagree with this one.  If _Triceratops_ charged each other from a 
distance, the results would be fatal to one or both animals.  Think of jousting 
knights using a spear (I forget the actual term), a shield, and that's it.  No 
body armor.  Things are even worse for the other chasmosaurines, their frill is 
not much of a shield, and is pretty vulnerable to damage (toss out the shield 
in this one).  Not a pretty picture.

I suggest that when these animals did fight, they did so at close quarters, 
locking their horns and attepting to push their rival into submission (think of 
deer for a moment).

Also, the semi-erect to fully sprawling posture that these animals had would 
provide extra leverege and stability during these confrontations.

For more info, see:

Farlow, J. O., Dodson, P.  1975.  "The behavioral significance of 
frill and horn morphology in ceratopsian dinosaurs."  Evolution.  29: 353-361.


Rob Meyerson

"Keep your stick on the ice."
        -Red Green