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Dino Talk Sept 6-10, 2001: A Dinosaur Forum

I've just seen Valley of the T.Rex, and ... it wasn't a bad show at all. Of course, I disagree with most of Horner's points (some of them even being obselete), but I enjoy a refreshing new take on my favorite dinosaur.

I particularly liked his interpretation on how T.Rex looked, I can agree with him on that among other things. He also gave measurements on the Wankel specimen's femur and shin, which were 50 and 46 inches respectively. He says this is proof of T.Rex being an exclusive walker, but I disagree.

I think its amusing that Horner believes Saurnitholestes (not sure if I spelled that correctly) is the true predator. Jackal-sized raptors bringing down a 7 ton bull triceratops? And hungry tyrannosaurs waiting around for this to happen on a daily basis? Even if they targeted smaller prey, T.Rex would starve if this was the case.

Again, Horner continues his arm arguements. I believe the arms were reduced in order for T.Rex to specialize in utilizing its jaws as its primary weapon. Flightless predator birds outcompeted marsupial carnivores in South America without arms, so I find this point void.

Well, gotta go now...I'll be back. Gotta eat.
from Sauron, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 10, 2001


"or even mention the damaged hardosaur tails?)"

I don't see the connection between the damaged hadrosaur fossils and T.rex being a hunter. I'm not saying he wasn't, but those fossils could mean anything. The fossils don't tell anything about the behaviors of animals. They tell the anatomy of the creature, and it is from that we draw conclusions.

"This is not really true, most animals can swim, up to a certain extent. Even horses, which are the exact opposite of what you'll expect from a good swimmer. However, it would be a misconception to say that Spinosaurus would have been a better swimmer than other theropods as there are no morphlogical structures or adaptations that suggest this! Certainly not JP3!"

Yes, but these are not horses we are talking about. I truly doubt the swimming abilities of an animal such as Spinosaur or Tyrannosaur.

"Any thoughts on the matter?"

On the scavenging debate, it is next to impossible that Tyrannosaur was a pure predator or scavenger. In today's anmials, there are few species that purely hunt or scavenge. Insects are an example of pure predators.

Wanna know something? Triceratops is believed to have the strongest bite force of all dinosaurs.
from Jason, age 13, Dayton, Ohio, USA; September 10, 2001


Its not unbeliveable that an animal as larg as Tyrannosaurus was a scavenger. The turkey volture is one of the largest of birds in North America and is still a scavenger. Tyrannosaurus probley had to eat its own weight in meat every week, thats 6.4 tons, its hard to belive that a scavenger of that size can find enugth cairein to feed its self. But remember that the animals that lived back then were much biger, and had plenty of weight in meat to suport a T-rex. Perhaps it had to eat the weight of just about two hadrosaurs in a week. Eating off of cairein may have added that up to lets say four or five hadrosaurs, do to the roted, and allready eaten meat, but Tyrannosaurus wouldent of eaten the entire animal in one feeding. Its posible, or probable, that T-rex would hunt, lets say once or twice a week if a carcuss couldnt be found. This would have suported T-rexes needs for food. It is a facted that T-rex would at lest try to hunt for food. This IS a fact for a hadrosaur skeleton was found with a bite taken out of its midtail area, and the bite marks match that of T-rex. That dosen't prove eney thing, exept for the fact that the broken vertabra show sings of regrowth proving that the Hadrosaur lived through the attack. So T-rex was indead a (if not very secsesfull) hunter. Auother argument of T-rex being a hunter is its strong secnes of smell. But its intresting to me that T-rex had the largest porsinal alfactory lobe (sence of smell) of eney animal to ever live exept a turkey volture. (maybe a scavenger needs to find the sairce amount of cairein from far away).
from KC, age 14, mocksville, N.C, U.S.A; September 10, 2001


Now that the board has returned to a semi-normal state I guess I'll come back.
The new stuff in the art section is great! I love your watercolor pareiasaur, Brad! And Honkie Tong's CG _Allosaurus_ head is really cool too! The modeling is great on that (I like the cartoonish quality, I wasn't taking it to be intended to be scientifically accurate). The Mathew Wright stuff is great too.
I have a scanner again now so expect some new drawings from me soon.

from Chandler, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 10, 2001


I'm not sure how big Brontosaurus (Apatosaurus excelus) was. It wasn't as large as the type species of Apatosaurus, A. ajax. Many popular sources giving size estimates use only genera, which creates a problem. The weight of Apatosaurus is often given as 30-35 tons, but this is based on outdated models and is probably too high. Gregory Paul estimates the weight of Apatosaurus at 17-20 tons, and I agree with his interpretation of the animal. (Have you seen Paul's Apatosaurus paintings? They're really neat.) The length of Apatosaurus is usually given at around 21 metres, or 70 feet.
from Brad, age 14, Woodville, ON, Canada; September 10, 2001


"Velociraptor was a dinoursaur that hunted in packs, when a dinosaur was separated from the heard about ten velociraptor's would attack it in packs by the sides making the dinosaur totally unaware... that poor defenceless dinosaur is still alive when the start to eat it."

Just don't forget that this is just your opinion, and not a proven fact. I don't think there is any evidence for pack hunting by Velociraptor.
from Brad, age 14, Fenelon Falls, ON, Canada; September 10, 2001


how big are brontosaurus?
from vsgrfhhtj, age 8, ?, ?, u7sa; September 10, 2001


T-rex as a scavenger has been a theory in and out of favor several times, but my own reading is that it is basically out of consideration right now, and likely to remain so. The arms don't enter into it - T-rex did not grapple with prey. Most experts I've heard agree that this thing had THE MOST capacious and powerful bites this Earth has ever seen, the mostly likely attack mode is a running bite that would yank half a hundred weight of meat off the hoof, possibly compounded with a slash from the rear talons (though Tyrannosaurus would not use his feet in the kill unless he was feeling flashy or wanting to impressing Sues I suspect). This thing had _massive_ muscles and tendons, not to mention pretty ferocious claws. It _looks_ like a killing machine evolved to eat large dinosaurs, and the ecosystem, as near as we can reconstruct it, would
seem to call for just such a beast. A massive scavenger, just doesn't seem to be called for.

After all, a dead dinosaur does not object to being eaten, and smaller and speedier scavengers would seem to have a big advantage. They could move faster and subsist on less - large portions of a carcass would be gone before a rex could get there. And, given what we can guess about lifespans, how many carcasses would there be without T-rex to make them? We can't depend on roving packs of velociraptors to take down an ultrasaurus, even presuming not
all of them travelled in herds. Dienonychus is my favorite dinosaur, but even a pack of them could not have stampeded and cut out a target for takedown out of a herd of tricers. The job would be tough enough for rex, though I can easily imagine a "pride" of rexes being equal to the job. Dinosaurs just lived on a different _scale_.

The arms, according to computer simulations I've heard about, probably had little to do in attack or eating. The only use they would seem to have is to steady the body and push it backwards when the beast rose from a lying position. Without them, all those massive hind legs could do would be to push the tyro's nose along in the dirt. The arms were large enough for that but only just - and they were heavily muscled for their size, so they were doing something that required some work.

Another piece of evidence cited for the scavenger theory that the original poster didn't mention was the shallow roots of t-rex's teeth, a commonly held misconception (t-rex had one of the most deeply rooted teeth). Of course, the shark - which does scavenge, though it is an efficient predator overall - also has shallowly-rooted teeth, and it isn't hindered. I've seen speculation that rex constantly renewed its teeth, so as to always have a fresh, clean edge. Pure scavengers would not need such teeth, even one the size of t-rex would not need such daggers just to cut into a dead dinosaur - look at the much smaller teeth of dinosaurs whose scavenging lifestyle is more plausible.

I have no doubt that rex could and would partake of a free meal whenever it found one. But I am reminded of a "Far Side" cartoon of one vulture saying to another "Patience, shmatience! I'm gonna _kill_ something!" The rex was quite well enough equipped, methinks.

No. Rex was a big predator that hunted really big prey. The primeval landscape would be just too tranquil if all he wanted was some dead meat. To be perfectly honest, I think the whole thing was dreamed up to give someone a little notoriety by knocking down of the most legendary dinosaurs ever to reach the public's imagination.

JACK HORNER!!!

The only major proponent of this therory in recent years has been J.
Horner, after a mass defection and desertion of experts to the "t.rex could hunt side" following the discovery of failed t.rex attacks on very lucky dinosaurs. His basic premisies are:

1) All modern hunters use their forelimbs in capturing prey.

and

2) Tyrannosaurus lacks speed adaptations.

Statement 1 is demonstrably incorrect: although felids (cats and great
cats) do certainly use their forelimbs in prey acquisition, most other
predators, such as canids (dogs, wolves,etc.), hyeanas, secretary birds, and such rely primarily on their jaws. It should be noted here that several groups of extinct large predatory birds (phorusrachids, diatrymid, and perhaps a few more) almost certainly used only their beaks in killing, as these groups were flightless and (unlike modern predatory birds) could not swoop down on their prey.

Statement 2 is also incorrect. Tyrannosaurs have proportionately elongate hind limbs (in fact, Tyrannosaurus rex has the same limb element ratios as many smaller dinosaurs, such as Dryosaurus, Dilophosaurus, and Coelophysis). Although tyrannosaurs may not have been capable of race horse speed as some advocate, they certainly were much faster than an equivalent sized allosaurid or ceratosaurian, who surprisingly, have not been touted as pure scavengers.

Another aspect to this debate is: if Tyrannosaurus rex was not the top
predator of the latest Cretaceous western North American fauna, what was? The sickle-clawed dromaeosaurids of this interval were all relatively small(smaller than the earlier Deinonychus), try to picture dog-sized dromaeosaurids taking on a 8-ton Torosaurus! There are no other suitable top predators.

Although this debate centers on the species Tyrannosaurus rex, there are other members of the Tyrannosauridae which approach the big guy in size: Tyrannosaurus (sometimes Tarbosaurus) bataar, large specimens of Albertosaurus libratus, and large specimens of Daspletosaurus torosus. Horner's stand rules them as scavengers also... given the lack of predators, the near K-T must be a real peaceful place.

Horner also banks heavily on the idea that t-rex could have made a good living by scaring smaller predators away from a kill, so much so there was no need to hunt. I disagree on many points. Lions, according to my reading, seldom appear first at a dead animal they did not kill, but they can, and do, displace smaller scavengers. In fact, has shown jackals as the premier scavengers, depicting them as the ones being displaced by lions.

But such observations merely beg the question. So T-rex may have had first place at any kill it discovered. What killed it? Are we presuming that saurians, tricers, stegosaurs and other such large, apparently herding, creatures are hunted exclusively by dromeosaurs in the quart-size and smaller?

There are a few modern animals whose size and herding instincts protect them from most non-human predation, but I find it hard to believe that so many species of large dinosaurs had also reached this exalted position, especially when facing a fossil that has "big game hunter" written all over it.

Back in the Jurassic, even a pride of allosaurs would have a tough time preying on a herd of large saurians, At the K-T, where the Tyrannosaurs were the only capable predators around, if rex didn't kill them then it follows the only source of dead saurians is old age, disease and accident. With such a relatively limited food source, it seems rather weird that any scavenger would evolve such size and mass - requiring a proportional size and mass of food - soley for the apparent purpose of being the most threatening scavenger. It would also seem to imply that rex was extremely rare, which is, going by the statistics from the fossil record, simpy not true. Tyrannosaurus was a relatively common animal.

And lions may well be the top of the heap in the scavenging world, going by Horner's logic, but they unquestionably efficient predators, as we can tell. So, it turns out, do jackals, that staple of scavenger definitions, make a lot, maybe even most of their living, from active hunting. I dunno, maybe rex just hunts at night, so Horner and company don't see them. :)

Hope this information proves useful.
from Kingston RAM, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 10, 2001


Hey, what's new about Horner's latest "discoveries"? They seem to be nothing but a rehash of his old points, except this time he's using stronger and more dramatic words, as if to exaggerate things. It's sad that one of the supposed "forefront" paleontologists should use such objective language. A good case of the empty vessel makes the most noise prehaps?
from Rosse, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 10, 2001


"Maybe we should start another debate: Horner, paleontologist or media jocky?"

Jack Horner, says this person, is nasty-looking, hunched-over hell-bent on winning that was a lousy scientist with mediocre arguments that had spindy little, two-dimentional points that would have been useless in a scientific debate. Even worse, when more evidence is uncovered of Tyrannosaurus hunting, those arguments could do little to dampen the impact of tons of falling nonsensical theory; the all-but-inevitable ridicule and laughter could easily prove fatal.

I think he's a media jockey.

Ok ok...he's actually quite a great scientist, but he is certianly using the mass media to propagate his ideas unfairly. (Notices how he NEVER bothers to explain the excellent Tyrannosaur limb-research by Holtz that directly contradicts his theory, or even mention the damaged hardosaur tails?) It's obvious he's evading the issue here, and it's kinda a low blow, to say all these very dramatic statements on Tyrannosaurus as if they had been conclusively proven (in fact, the reverse is true). Stubborn? I dunno... but this is bad science if have an attitude like this. His conduct on JP3 was VERY unscientific and unfair. If he was really dedicated to making "realistic" dinos, he would have refered the paleontological support of reconstructing the meat-eating dinos to a person better than him in that area, like Holtz. (Instead, Holtz ended up picking up the pieces by correcting all his errors in the JP3 field guide.)

So Horner must have been both a scientist and a media jockey, using the media as an efficent means of spreading his ideas without scientific scrutiny. In Tyrannosaurus' case though, he seems to be almost 100 percent media jockey!
from Lubek, age 16, ?, ?, ?; September 10, 2001


Hey, foget to mention in my last post, but there is a great website for art images of dinosaurs, its fantastic, from artists all over the online community, check it out, won't be sorry you did, its http://dinosauricon.com/main/index.html. And Tonights show on the valley of the trex should be interesting
from ECTrex, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 10, 2001


Don't beat on Discovery channel over the latest T.rex feista. Notice they stated "ACCORDING TO HORNER" rather clearly.

...

-Everytime Horner makes a theory on T.rex, paleontologists roll their eyes...
from Leonard, age 14, ?, ?, ?; September 10, 2001


Maybe we should start another debate: Horner, paleontologist or media jocky?
from Leonard, age 14, ?, ?, ?; September 10, 2001


"Tyrannosaurus, says Jack Horner, was a nasty-looking, hunched-over beast that was a lousy runner "

Heh heh, T.rex wasn't a runner at all, it's extremely unlikely he or any other large carnivorous dinosaur ever achieved a suspensary locomotion state at all, that mean, both of the animals feet would be off the ground, that means it was running. T.rex always kept one foot on the ground at all times (makes sense anyway) and he could capture any of his prey simply by walking fast. He could achieve pretty amazing speeds simply by walking fast and his center of gravity is never put on such a suspension as in a running animal that he was at a great risk of tripping and falling.

And I won't even start on the vision bit. Paleontologists who studied Tyrannosaurus as a speciality conclude this animal had very good vision. Besides, if he really was a well-designed scavenger, there would really be no selective pressure for him to attain steroscopic vision at all.

And the arms. Is Horner still at it? He obviously failed to notice that Tyrannosaurus used his head as the main weapon, and it was more than enough to make up for the arms. Hello? Besides, who needs arms to manhandle prey when you could already seriously maim it with a single bite? I don't see dogs or wolves using any arms to bring down their prey nowadays...

A well-designed scavenger? I don't think so.

Given his arguments, it's pretty odd he should say that Spinosaurus was the true predator...
from Leonard, age 14, ?, ?, ?; September 10, 2001


"I think he expects to get a lot of hate mail, and he won't reply. I'm going to ask him the exact femur-tibia ratio of Tyrannosaurus rex, as it seems important in his theory."

Horner's locomotive comclusions from his study of Tyrannosaurus limbs are very strange indeed. It seems to directly contradict Tom Holtz's very detailed study of Tyrannosaur limb biomechnics. I wonder if Horner is merely trying to fit the evidence into his theory instead of making it speak out for itself. Hmm... this is very stange. How do other dinosaurs figure in as speedier and more predatory designs when they were slower and less efficent movers? Besides, his latest "report" seems to me like a simple repetition of his old points, most of which just don't cut it.

"Spinosaur and other large theropods couldn't swim!"

This is not really true, most animals can swim, up to a certain extent. Even horses, which are the exact opposite of what you'll expect from a good swimmer. However, it would be a misconception to say that Spinosaurus would have been a better swimmer than other theropods as there are no morphlogical structures or adaptations that suggest this! Certainly not JP3!
from Honkie Tong, age 17, ?, ?, ?; September 10, 2001


Velociraptor.

Velociraptor was a dinoursaur that hunted in packs, when a dinosaur was separated from the heard about ten velociraptor's would attack it in packs by the sides making the dinosaur totally unaware. While some raptors dug ruthlessly into the dinosaur, others would bit its neck trying to make it fall to the ground. Once this occurred the raptors would start to eat. You would probably think that the poor dinosaur would die quickly and be put out of misery and than his troubles would be over, but if I told you this I would be liying, the point is that that poor defenceless dinosaur is still alive when the start to eat it.

>From

A person who wants to learn about these dinosaurs.
from Velociraptor, age 17, Melbourne, ?, Australia; September 10, 2001


Wow, I am again impressed by the intelligence in this forum, from both sides. I truly am, especially seeing such young people explaining their beliefs so clearly(alot better some adults I know). For my belief, I think T.Rex was a hunter, but he did scanvenge from time to time. He was too large a carnivore to sustain himself on carrion alone. Take hyenas and lions. If given the chance, hyenas will hunt(flammengos). They don't do it regularly because well, lions are simply much bigger and more powerful. But, I am no expert, and I do see the side of the pro-scavenger belief as well. Just for me anyways, goes back to the simple fact of today:"No large land based carnivore survives solely on carrion alone"
from E.C., age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 9, 2001


This Is Euoplacephulas.I Changed My Name Cause T.Rex Fans Use My Name!Go Ahead-Keep Using The Name Euoplacephulas.It`s Not Mine Anymore.
from Stegosaurus Rules!, age 8, Alta, CA, USA; September 9, 2001


"It would have been much easier for a T. Rex to kill something himself than to wait for someone else to do it."
reply:
"No it wouldn't because scavenging takes much less energy than hunting."

Yes, it may take less energy to hunt than scavenge, but look at it this way: Tyranosaurus Rex has two choices. Wander around and go hungry in search of carrion to eat or go out and kill the prey himself. What would you choose? I think the answer is clear. T. Rex was looking for the fastest and therefore easiest way to get food. The energy he lost hunting would have been made up when he fed, and he would have recieved much more energy from eating a fresh kill than a one that's already been picked at by various scavengers and hunters of the area. He may have used more energy in the short term but gained more in the long term.
from Skeptic, age 13, Toronto, ?, Do I really have to say?; September 9, 2001


A rino and elephant beating a T-REX? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHA you stupid moron.. a t-rex would tear both of them in half!!! A T-Rex`s wepon is its jaw ... and legs...if you think a rino would beat a t-rex you are one dumb asshole.First of all a T-rex is like 15 feet taller than a rino... second a T-rex can run more than 5X as fast as a rino if not more.. 3rd a T-rex is like 3 times longer than a rino... 4th a T-rex`s tooth is as big as the horn on a rino...ther are hundreds of reasons how T-rex would beat a rino... and an elephant?!?!?! HAHAHAHAHAHA im not even gunna waist my time.oh and 4 voloce Raptoers would probably not beat a fully grown t-rex.All the T-Rex has to do is rip each of them in half one by one.. its too big for a raptor to make a real serious injoury.
from Rob.p.(itsamario), age 14, london, ontario, canada; September 9, 2001


"We should e-mails to him telling him he's wrong. Be blunt in your
point if you have to. Tell it like it is!"

I think he expects to get a lot of hate mail, and he won't reply. I'm going to ask him the exact femur-tibia ratio of Tyrannosaurus rex, as it seems important in his theory.
from Brad, age 14, Woodville, ON, Canada; September 9, 2001


I have enjoyed reading these discussions, and to be honest, especially impressed with Honkie Tong(Is that correct?), he explains his theories and beliefs in a clean and concise manner. Must be noted I do respect and admire Jack Horner as I do all sciencists, even though I may not agree with them. I do have a question however, the recent debate of over the predation of Tyrannosaurus Rex is hotly contested. If I'm not mistaken, isn't there a fossil of some sort of hadrosaur that survived a Tyrannosaur attack? I'm not confessing to be very knowledgeable, but doesn't that kinda prove he was a predator, and a very active one at that(taking into account how rare it is for skeletons to be fossilized in the first place, he must have been a prolific hunter if there is a fossil showing a failed attack). It seems rather an open and shut case, when one considers the statisical probablity of it all. Any thoughts on the matter?
from Rich, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 9, 2001


"Though lions would steal kills from heynas the moment the chance appears, and with their big size and power would have been perfectly suited, they don't usually do so for the simple reason the heynas know this and would rather wait for them to make a kill!"

Hyenas will also do the same, and the lions are more than willing to give up their kills to them, despite their size and power.

"Getting a first bite in for Tyrannosaurus is a big advantage. Tyrannosaurus could kill any animal in his environment with a well-placed single bite."

Yes, but if the other creature was still alive, and let's say it was another Tyrannosaur, and managed to rip off a huge chunk of flesh off the neck or something from the one who got the first bite in, well that first bite didn't help much.
from ?, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 9, 2001


Horner is pretty strange to say that he's no expert on T. rex and then put up an article with an "Ask The Expert" section. Everyone, starting tomorrow and between Thursday, they're letting people send e-mails to Horner. We should e-mails to him telling him he's wrong. Be blunt in your point if you have to. Tell it like it is!
from Samuel C., age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 9, 2001


"Spinosaur and other large theropods couldn't swim!"

Why not?
from Brad, age 14, Woodville, ON, Canada; September 9, 2001


Ornitholestes may have been found in the very early Cretaceous part of the Morrison, but it certainly wasn't around in the time of Triceratops. I don't think Horner would write that.
from Brad, age 14, Woodville, ON, Canada; September 9, 2001


Why all the fuss over the respected scientist Jack Horner saying T.Rex was a scavenger?

News Flash: T.REX WAS A SCAVENGER!!!
from Holly, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 9, 2001


Don't you think Horner is pretty absurd? I mean which superpredator today can we state that will pass up a free meal? Pre-dead meat is after all still meat, which you didn't work for and is the most energy efficent type of meal that you can find. But to suggest that an animal like Tyrannosaurus would have spent its entire life going after pre-dead meat as its sole purpose in life would be pretty absurd.

And being the top of the food chain, Tyrannosaurus would have done most of the killing anyway. He was after all, the most effective predator to go out after the superherbivores like Triceratops and Anatotitan! Unless Horner could prove that Tyrannosaurus was not an effective hunter, which he has yet to do, I doubt Tyrannosaurus would have lounged around much, waiting for less-effective hunters to do their job, hoping they suceed, and than chasing them away for a free meal. No other predator was better equipped to handle the largest herbivores, and Tyrannosaurus would have to do the job pretty much by himself, not to mention he was the best at it.

Besides, the only meals that Tyrannosaurus could have stolen was from those made by other Tyrannosaurids. The Tyrannosaurids were the only big game hunters left in the area at that time. And it really defeats Horner's theory on Tyrannosaurids being scavengers in general as Tyrannosaurus rex would have to had steal meals from other supposed "scavengers"! It's self defeating!

To say that being the top carnivore, Tyrannosaurus could make out a living mostly by scaring other smaller predators away from a kill would be pretty much to say that lions, as the top carnivore, lounged around their entire lives, waiting for the heyna or jackal to bring down a wilderbeast before barging in without so much as a "thank you.". Could Tyrannosaurus scare other predators from a meal? Of course? Based on this ability, would he have spent most of his time scavenging? I don't think so. He must have spent quite a bit of his time hunting. Top carnivores like Tyrannosaurus do most of the killing, while the smaller ones lower on the foodchain tend to scavenge. Unless there was something really special in Tyrannosaurus' case, I don't see how this could be any different. And the smaller predators must be pretty stupid and self-defeating to present Tyrannosaurus with enough meals to support him his entire life or most of the time anyway. Besides, the odds of fossils surviving are rare enough, the idea that some could survive to show Tyrannosaurus predation gives us an idea that Tyrannosaurus preyed on animals commonly enough.
from Lillian T., age 14, ?, ?, ?; September 9, 2001


your dinsaur is cute but the picture is too little, i wish you could put more picture.

from:Ooi ying ying
to: you

from ying ying, age 9, singapore, singapore, singapore; September 9, 2001


I was over at the discovery website when I came across a line which stated that Ornitholestes faced off against Triceratops...umm, wasn't Ornitholestes a small, JURASSIC carnivore?? Or is there a Cretaceous version I'm not aware of? Even so, could this tiny animal bring down 6 ton plus triceratops?? I find it hard to imagine, even in large packs of 20 members or more. Anyway, here is a link to see what I'm talking about:

http://dsc.discovery.com/tuneins/trex.html

I personally think Horner is behind this absurd piece of information.
from Darius, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 9, 2001


Seesh... I don't understand Horner at all. It amazing anybody even takes whatever he says on Tyrannosaurus seriously after all his amazing blunders. Even better, he still contuines to agrue on points that have already been disproved. Frankly, I don't think any land based animal can make a living entirely by scaring the crap out of smaller animals and hoping for things to drop dead, certianly not a 6-ton one. Horner should really return to Hardosaurs and stop making a public fool out of himself. I mean nobody takes hims seriously anymore, when asked about him on Tyrannosaurus, other paleontologists just smile and give "that look". Heck, he's about as useful as a bone digger when he comes to Tyrannosaurus.
from Josse, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 9, 2001


Hmm, I'm not sure where the T.rex can't see you if you're standing still stuff came from, but it certainly isn't true. According to braincase and skull studies, Tyrannosaurus had advanced vision, so much so some paleontologists have suggested that he would have been on par or superior to the eyesight of modern eagles. I wouldn't stand still around him if I were you, he'll still see you. Tyrannosaurus could see fine, standing still or not.

Getting a first bite in for Tyrannosaurus is a big advantage. Tyrannosaurus could kill any animal in his environment with a well-placed single bite. It would make sense for him to do so, avoiding damage to himself wile doing damage to his prey. Even a "scrape" or glancing blow from Tyrannosaurus, as we see from all the damaged fossils of the dinosaurs who managed to escape, caused extensive damage.
from Josse, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 8, 2001


Hmm, I'm not sure where the T.rex can't see you if you're standing still stuff came from, but it certainly isn't true. According to braincase and skull studies, Tyrannosaurus had advanced vision, so much so some paleontologists have suggested that he would have been on par or superior to the eyesight of modern eagles. I wouldn't stand still around him if I were you, he'll still see you. Tyrannosaurus could see fine, standing still or not.

Getting a first bite in for Tyrannosaurus is a big advantage. Tyrannosaurus could kill any animal in his environment with a well-placed single bite. It would make sense for him to do so, avoiding damage to himself wile doing damage to his prey. Even a "scrape" or glancing blow from Tyrannosaurus, as we see from all the damaged fossils of the dinosaurs who managed to escape, caused extensive damage.
from Josse, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 8, 2001


Hmm, I'm not sure where the T.rex can't see you if you're standing still stuff came from, but it certainly isn't true. According to braincase and skull studies, Tyrannosaurus had advanced vision, so much so some paleontologists have suggested that he would have been on par or superior to the eyesight of modern eagles. I wouldn't stand still around him if I were you, he'll still see you. Tyrannosaurus could see fine, standing still or not.

Getting a first bite in for Tyrannosaurus is a big advantage. Tyrannosaurus could kill any animal in his environment with a well-placed single bite. It would make sense for him to do so, avoiding damage to himself wile doing damage to his prey. Even a "scrape" or glancing blow from Tyrannosaurus, as we see from all the damaged fossils of the dinosaurs who managed to escape, caused extensive damage.
from Josse, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 8, 2001


"They say that Allosaurus did jump onto his prey and would kill himself if he did.That doesn't mean he couldn't jump or did something like jumping on his prey.Maybe he jumped at his prey(for very short distances).I think every theropod could jump at least a few inches.Even T-Rex with his powerful legs could jump a little.Thats only an opinion.Someone correct me if I'm wrong."

Of course, this jumping would not have been useful for anything at all. But T.rex, and most other large dinosaurs for that matter, didn't do too much jumping. Allosaurus was almost certainly was not able to jump onto his prey! You have to bend a lot of rules of biomechnics (applied motional physics to biology) to do that!

"Its legs were desiged for quik burst of speed not nesasairaly for just runing fast, unlike the legs of albertosaurus wihch were designed for more preditary behaver."

Actually there is hardly any distinct morphlogical difference between Albertosaurus' legs and Tyrannosaurus legs. In fact, it is sometimes so difficult to tell these species apart than the only reliable way of seperating them is by ther teeth and brow bones, of which different species of Tyrannosaurs have their own. The limbs only get extremely gracile in the very smallest Tyrannosaurids, where they are measurement for measurement, exactly identical with that of ostirch mimics. Tyrannosaurids in general do have very much more speedier limbs than any other big-prey hunter though. All in all, Tyrannosaurus wansn't in any way difficent to Albertosaurus significantly in the locomotion department to make it any less of a predator. Tyrannosaurus limbs were certainly designed for moving extremely fast and certainly more so than their prey. If you are looking for the quick burst of speed types, the robust limbs of the "raptors" would be a good pick.

On the matter of Tyrannosaurus stealing kills, this is certianly possible, and being the biggest, Tyrannosaurus woudl ahve had an unparalled advantage in chasing other animals away from a kill to steal it. But then again, if you look at the biggest hypercarnivores in any ecosystem, you'll realize that they actually do most of the hunting instead of stealing a catch from the smaller carnivores. The reason being the smaller carnivores are less willing to catch prey around the larger predators, due to the threat of predation or losing a meal, or simply because a larger predator makes a sizeable catch that would be good scavenge later. Though lions would steal kills from heynas the moment the chance appears, and with their big size and power would have been perfectly suited, they don't usually do so for the simple reason the heynas know this and would rather wait for them to make a kill! In areas devoid of lions, and where heynas are the top predator around, they do almost 100 percent of the killing in the area. Typically, in any ecosystem, the largest predator does the killing in the order before the smaller ones do. I suspect this would be the situtation we find in Tyrannosaurus rex interacting with other smaller predators. Instead of looking at the large size of Tyrannosaurus and saying this must have happened, try looking at it from the point of a smaller predator. Does this make sense? Is it energy efficent to risk life and expend energy to bring down a prey item only to have it stolen from you and reaping no energy return or reward from it?

"

How times change....

"I'm no expert on T. rex."
John R. Horner, _The Complete T. rex_, 1993.

But now...

"Ask the Expert... email your T. rex questions to legendary paleontologist Jack Horner."
http://dsc.discovery.com/convergence/trex/ask/ask.html

"

That's the scary part, despite being no expert on T.rex, it appears he got "hyped" up enough (via flagrant display of radical views) to be asked in an area which he has virtually no accucrate information on! The mass media always focuses on the "radical" rebel! But of course, his "expert" opinion on Tyrannosaurus has compromised scientific intergity. Ugh. No wonder the dinosaurs in JP3 turned out that way...
from Honkie Tong, age 17, ?, ?, ?; September 8, 2001


Does anyone know if Jurassica will be shown in the U.S.??
from Rich, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 8, 2001


"He goes comparing modern day animals, but how many modern day reptiles actually use arms to kill with?"

Oh isn't SO EVIL of him to compare dinosaurs to modern animals?

"It's not really the scavenger part I disagree with, but why would Horner state that T. rex is ugly?"

Why does it matter?

"Vultures are scavengers because their beaks are too weak to kill fresh meat! THey wait untill the meat is soft and rotten before they swoop down!"

No they don't they wait until all the competition has eaten their fill. Then they move in. And some species of vulture do hunt occasionally.

"Unless you're interested in the bones, you do NOT need strong, crushing jaws to scavenge!"

Hyenas and other animals would be quite interested in the bones. They contain calcium, phosphorous, and vitamin D. Now if the Tyrannosaur wasn't interested in bones, why have bone-crushing jaws then?If the whole bone crushing jaw is so awesome, then why couldn't a hyena kill a lion?

"It would have been much easier for a T. Rex to kill something himself than wait for someone else to do it"

No it would not, because scavenging takes much less energy than hunting.

"We can evolve natural defenses against disease? Seems kind of suspicious to me, since the disease would probably evolve more quickly than we would."

Our bodies immune system does not need to evolove, because it is quite effecive already. Bacterium change because they must keep pace with the immune system, not the other way around. However, there is a fatal flaw. The immune system cannot attack and defend effectivley unless the invading agent has attacked before and was "remembered" by the antibodies. The antibodies cannot tag and label the invaders as dangerous to the body if they don't recognize the agent, decreasing the chance to fight it off.

"Raptors: Were smart and would group around their pray and in a timly manner Kill it. Toansarus Rex: Couldn't See Very well if the Pray was standing still; But if they were running and he/she coat their pray Killed and eat'n Quickly. Spinosaurus:Swam And Ate fish. Oh and if your Wondering I'm A girl Who's Entering the dabate don't Ignore me!!!!!!!!"

The facts made in the movies weren't real. The Velociraptor wasn't that big or that smart, the Tyrannosaur could see the prey moving or not, and Spinosaur and other large theropods couldn't swim!
from Jason, age 13, Dayton, Ohio, USA; September 8, 2001


They say that Allosaurus did jump onto his prey and would kill himself if he did.That doesn't mean he couldn't jump or did something like jumping on his prey.Maybe he jumped at his prey(for very short distances).I think every theropod could jump at least a few inches.Even T-Rex with his powerful legs could jump a little.Thats only an opinion.Someone correct me if I'm wrong.
from Gloman, age 2222222223, ?, ?, ?; September 8, 2001


John Horner is not completely wrong. Sure T-rex was enginered to kill, but it may have been designed to scavenge. Animals that have bone crushing jaws are most often scavengers, the resign they have bone crushing jaws is because they have to get the meat between the ribs, and under the hips, as well as the muscles raped around the ankels and forelimbes that the other carnivars would miss. T-rex may have used its huge size to scair other peditars away, for T-rex was the largest carniveris aminal around at that time. Its legs were desiged for quik burst of speed not nesasairaly for just runing fast, unlike the legs of albertosaurus wihch were designed for more preditary behaver. You can almost picture a larg tyrannosaurus runing in on a freshly killed hadrosaur from a much smaller albertosaur. I can't use T-rexes small arms as an example for being a scavenger, for it had no use for them with it's masive skull. With all the hadrosaurs and ceritopsians that dye in herds, maybe crossing a river, would have suplied T-rex with all it needed to survie. I'm not saying that tyrannosaurus was strikedly a scavenger, for it had every thing a killer needs, but no dinosaur would ever passup a free meal.
from KC, age 14, mocksville, N,C, U,S,A; September 8, 2001


how fast is a tyrannosaurs
from daniel r, age 10, chicago, illonis, united state; September 8, 2001


I think velociraptors ROCK!!!!!!because there the fastest and the smartest and cool looking!!!e-mail me any one or talk to me!!
from Andrea.L., age 12, ottawa, ontario, canada; September 8, 2001


How times change....

"I'm no expert on T. rex."
John R. Horner, _The Complete T. rex_, 1993.

But now...

"Ask the Expert... email your T. rex questions to legendary paleontologist Jack Horner."
http://dsc.discovery.com/convergence/trex/ask/ask.html

from Brad, age 14, Woodville, ON, Canada; September 8, 2001


"Tellingme to "end this topic" is a pretty silly way to stop ideas you don't like. I thought only creationists didn't like the idea of the continuing evolution of people."

Sorry. It's not that I don't like your ideas, I just disagree and I don't see this conversation going anywhere. I'll admit now that you may be right, and I didn't really put a lot of thought into my arguments. I'm certainly not a creationist. But Dino Talk is a dinosaur forum, sif we must discuss evolution let's get back to some dinosaurian examples.
from Brad, age 14, Woodville, ON, Canada; September 8, 2001


Once again, Horner shows his ignorance to actual facts. If he thinks T. Rex is a scavenger, he can go out and eat some T. rex poop. His comparison to hyeanas and vultures are pointless. Hyeanas were NOT full scavengers. They've been kwon to prey on flamingoes. Vultures are scavengers because their beaks are too weak to kill fresh meat! THey wait untill the meat is soft and rotten before they swoop down! Unless you're interested in the bones, you do NOT need strong, crushing jaws to scavenge! Horner also says that T. rex's legs were built for walking. Ha! They may be thick, but they are uselful for sprinting for short periods of times! They're are buit shightly like humans, with the big legs. Also like humans, we don't use our hands themselves for killing prey. Just because it has short arms doesn't mean it's a scavenger! Giganatosaurus was much closer to a scavenger than T. rex!
from Samuel C., age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 8, 2001


To tell you the truth how is Horner Sure about T-Rex? How Would he know is he from the time of the dinosaurs???? Gosh he'd be old! if you ask me Horners just a Big T-rex Bully. What Trynasuarus Says about Horner in Horners Stupid Flase report is so true! If you ask me T-rex was not ugly, But Butiful like all dinosaurs. Most Pepole like Brociosaurus But If We called T-rex Brociosaurus and brociosaurs T-rex Whould it still be the same? would A Rose by any other name smell as sweet???? If There was a tower of raw meat on the ground of course T-rex would eat it!!!!! Horner is soooooooo Stupid!
~Maddy~

from ~Maddy~, age 11, San Acacio (not sanford ), Colorado, U>S>A; September 8, 2001


"Utahraptors could not jump much higher than your typical human distance of 3 feet. At nearly one ton and with such robust limbs, they were ill suited for jumping at such weights. Smaller raptors could jump better for they were like ten times lighter...and even then, they would not have managed more than seven feet. Face it, jumping is risky behaviour. Utahraptors have severly limited jump capacities."

This is interesting, and he does have a point. The biomechnical treatment of the Utahraptor foot does seem to concur with his statement: Utahraptors were not good jumpers.
from Honkie Tong, age 17, ?, ?, ?; September 8, 2001


"Spitck: You are correct about the first bite not being so important. About it; but remember that tyrannosaur could not see it's prey too well, unless it is moving. To put all bets on Spiny, raptors are where the money is, if you stay still they'll get you. If you run for your life they'll get you. But on the other hand, a tyrannosaur ol' Spiny could eat in one single bite. But I doubt Spiny would because he "supposedly" only ate fish. Hunting facts Raptors: were smart and would group around it's prey and in a timely manner kill it. Tyrannosaurus rex: Couldn't see very well when it's prey was standing still; but if they were running he/she caught their prey kill and ate it quickly."

This looks like all your facts are based on the jurassic park movie. Firstly, Tyrannosaurus Rex's vision wasn't as bad as you made it out to be. It was something we call "steroscopic vision," which means T. Rex's vision was quite good. This is a mistake many people make. Next, if the prey was standing still, T. Rex wouldn't need to see it that well, because he could hear and smell it. This is due to the facts that Tyrannosaurus rex had highly acute hearing and large olbofactory bulbs, which enabled him to have an excellent sense of smell. So really, T. Rex could ot only see his victim well, but he also sould hear it breathing and eating if he was close enough and could smell it for miles away.

Next, there is no concrete evidence that raptors hunted in packs, no matter how much some of us would like to think so. The films only portrayed them this way to make them more dangerous. If they did hunt in packs, though, they certainly would have been the versatile hunters you said they'd be. But before we can go around saying that in a pack they could beat any enemy, we'll need to be sure that they hunted in packs.

And Spiny couldn't kill a T. Rex with one bite. He was too weak and T. Rex was to strong. I don't want to go into the elaborate details right now, so I finish here.
from Skeptic, age 13, Toronto, the place to be, ?, Canada, you know, the big red one?; September 8, 2001


I have been a dino fan for 6 years, and all my friends think i am a dinoexpert
from dinogirl, age 10, london, ?, Ayesbury; September 8, 2001


"I'm hesitant about mentioning this because some people will likely beleive it, but there is a long new article online about Horner's Tyrannosaurus rex: Ugly Scavenger theroy- yes, he still hasn't given up! It's not really the scavenger part I disagree with, but why would Horner state that T. rex is ugly? Here is the link:
http://dsc.discovery.com/convergence/trex/feature/feature.html
Let's prove all of those points wrong! I'll be back to join in after supper."

Oh great, here we go again.. You know, Horner is a lot like the random T-Rex bashers who post to this board. It isn't too surprising since they use him as their poster boy. I can't believe that he honestly still thinks that hole arm nonsense matters.. His ideas of research are so conflicting too, that I hardly know where to begin.
He goes comparing modern day animals, but how many modern day reptiles actually use arms to kill with? Are Alligators and Crocodiles famous for using their arms for killing? He talks about people ignoring science, and just buying into "legend" but then he just goes and ignores everything that he doesn't want to see.

Arms are not needed for killing when you have the most powerful bite force, with the most deeply rooted teeth in all of this planet's history. This is something that he ignores entirely. next up, his leg bone idea. I don't exactly know much about this, so I'm going to leave it alone for the most part. But, aren't most thigh bones larger than shin bones on, at least humans? We don't have much trouble running either.. Horner also ignores the recent discoveries of the young T-Rex's with a supposedly different body structure. Again, only seeing what he wants to.

I find it funny how he goes on about how the appearance of "raptors" makes them appear lethal. (And since when did velociraptor move to North America? yet he looks at a six ton animal that can by all rights step on most dinosaurs and finish them off, and all he can think is scavenger. I think it's pretty obvious at this point that Horner is just plain desperate, and even becoming unprofessional.. I think he really has something against T-Rex. He's even resulted to name calling.. How sad can you get? Sheesh.
from Usen, age 20, ?, ?, USA; September 7, 2001


"I recently watched a program on TV called Jurassica and it said that the Spinosaurus was a fast mover, as it often had to run for it's life from other meat eating dinosaurs. I was wondering if anyone can tell me what exactly Spinosaurus was running from? As I can't seem to find anything around at the time up to the task. Is this program wrong with it's statemnt? Were there bigger, meaner dinosaurs around Africa at the same time to have fed on Spinosaurus? Sorry, Spiny, but I can't see you taking down a T. rex.........nahhhhh."

Possibly Carcharodontosaurus....but I aint sure
from Guile, age 19, ?, ?, Philippines; September 7, 2001


Spitck:
You are corret about the Frist Bit not having any thing "specail" About it; But Remeber Toranusar could not see it's pray very well, in less it was moving. To Put all Bet's Down On Spiny, Raptors Are were the money is If you stay still they'll get ya; If You run for your life They'll get ya. But on the other hand A Toransauror ol'Spiny Could EAT one in a single bite. But, I doubt Spiny would be cause he "Saposedly" Only ate Fish. * Hunting Facts* Raptors: Were smart and would group around their pray and in a timly manner Kill it. Toansarus Rex: Couldn't See Very well if the Pray was standing still; But if they were running and he/she coat their pray Killed and eat'n Quickly. Spinosaurus:Swam And Ate fish. Oh and if your Wondering I'm A girl Who's Entering the dabate don't Ignore me!!!!!!!!

from ~Maddy~, age 11, Sanford, colorado, u.s.a; September 7, 2001


" Seems kind of suspicious to me, since the disease would probably evolve more quickly than we would." If this was true, people would have died out already. THink about the plague that hit Europe in the middle ages -- the plague didn't keep on evolving, killing everyone.. The peopl who survived were diffferent from the people who died. This is the type of evolutionary pressure that could wipe out a species, or just change it (I bet some lots of dinosaurs went extinct or evolved a little because of evolutionary pressures like this).

"So all of my life decisions are inherited? Scary. Let's end this topic, as it has nothing to do with dinosaurs." First -- I never said that ALL your life decisions are inherited, but it's pretty obvious that many are. Genes don;t only control external physical traits -- they have a major influence on all parts of your life (including influencing the way you think and things like your reaction time). Second -- doesn't learning about evolution help in learning about dinosaurs? If scientists understood more about evolution they would know more about dinosaurs. Tellingme to "end this topic" is a pretty silly way to stop ideas you don't like. I thought only creationists didn't like the idea of the continuing evolution of people.
from Caroline, age ?, Muk, WA, ?; September 7, 2001


"I recently watched a program on TV called Jurassica and it said that the Spinosaurus was a fast mover, as it often had to run for it's life from other meat eating dinosaurs. I was wondering if anyone can tell me what exactly Spinosaurus was running from? As I can't seem to find anything around at the time up to the task. Is this program wrong with it's statemnt? Were there bigger, meaner dinosaurs around Africa at the same time to have fed on Spinosaurus? Sorry, Spiny, but I can't see you taking down a T. rex.........nahhhhh."

Actually, there was a large predatory dinosaur called Carcharodontosaurus which lived at the same time and area of Spinosaurus. It was about the same size and closely related to the Gigantosaurus theropod, which has been found in Patagonia. In my opinion, it could have taken down a Spinosaur. Since all Spinosaur had to defend himself were loosely rooted teeth and big claws (Wow...yawn), which might have only scratched a Carchodontosaurus, so Spinosaurus probably did have to get away to avoid being eaten.

Face it Spino fans, your dinosaur was just a big fish eatin' wuss who ate fish and had been selected as the dinosaur to beat T. rex in the jurassic park three movie just because he was big. But in real life, T. Rex would have snapped this over rated freak's neck in easily.

"Why is the first bite so important? It doesn't matter, unless the first bite was some huge gash taken from the leg or something. What if the first bite is a scrape on the shoulder or something? Won't help much."

You're right when you say that the first bite wasn't that important. T. Rex would have had no problem chasing dow his prey if it noticed him before he got the bite to it's neck. This thing was designed to kill, even without the advantage of surprise.

But that advantage of surprise certainly would have been useful. If he did get the bite in before the prey noticed, it'd be dead before it knew where the T. Rex came from. If this was the case, than it would have saved T. Rex a great deal of time and energy from having to chase down the prey to kill it.

Though it is more likely than not that a bite from T. rex or Gigantosaurus was "some huge gash taken from the leg or something" than "a little scrape off the shoulder."
from Skeptic, age 13, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, eh; September 7, 2001


I find many of Horner's arguements for T.Rex being solely a scavenger are just plain absurd. HELLO! There's already been confirmed evidence of tyrannosaur predation, in the form of an unsuccessful edmontosaur attack. Sheesh. There are simply too many holes in Horner's arguements that cannot be ignored. I whole-heartedly accept a scavenger Rex...but not entirely so. I believe it would fulfill the niche of both predator and scavenger depending on the situation. If there is 6 tons of meat lying around, of course the T.Rex will gorge itself on it.
from Darius, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 7, 2001


Enuff With Bruce Lee this Is Dino Talk not Dead Marsail Artist Talk. I'm sitt'n At home on a friday night and want to talk about dinosaurs not Bruce Lee *Note* Chinese Pepole eat cats not dog's way do You think their chicken lo mien is so string and tough? Because it's not realy chicken but cat! lol!
from Madison, age 10, San Acacio, Colorado, u.s.; September 7, 2001


i hate t-rex!!!!!!!!!Srinosaurus is a 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 times better than t-rex
from dustin c., age 10, denver, colorado, u.s.a.; September 7, 2001


"Let's see... Tyrannosaurus, like all predators wouldn't attack anything unless he had the advantage of surprise and got in the first bite."

Why is the "first bite" so important? It doesn't matter, unless the "first bite" was some huge gash taken from the leg or something. What if the "first bite" is a little scrape off the shoulder? Won't help much.
from Jason, age 13, Dayton, Ohio, USA; September 7, 2001


There's been a little indescrpeancy about this topic of T. rex using his fearsome appearance to scare smaller predators away from their kill to eat it. Did anyone else think that this appearance would more probably have been used to keep scavengers away from T. rex's own kill? Plus, T. Rex did more hunting than scavenging, and if he did scavenge as some of you suggest, then hey would have had to watch and wait for other predators to kill something. It would have been much easier for a T. Rex to kill something himself than wait for someone else to do it (animals don't evolve powerful characteristics like strong teeth and muscular legs just to scare smaller things away anyway).

JC, thank you for finally putting an end to this Wrestling junk. Leonard's right, that board should be called "trash". Anyway, it's gone now. And I don't blame you for rarely taking the advice of someone who doesn't sign their name.
from Skeptic, age 13, Toronto, Toronto is in Ontario?, don't you know by know?; September 7, 2001


I'm hesitant about mentioning this because some people will likely beleive it, but there is a long new article online about Horner's Tyrannosaurus rex: Ugly Scavenger theroy- yes, he still hasn't given up! It's not really the scavenger part I disagree with, but why would Horner state that T. rex is ugly? Here is the link:

http://dsc.discovery.com/convergence/trex/feature/feature.html

Let's prove all of those points wrong! I'll be back to join in after supper.
from Brad, age 14, Woodville, ON, Canada; September 7, 2001


"There are still plenty of evolutionary pressures, even for those
of us have cushy lives -- pressures like new incurable diseases,"

We can evolve natural defenses against disease? Seems kind of suspicious to me, since the disease would probably evolve more quickly than we would.

"the unhealthy effects of pollution,"

I agree that perhaps future humans will be much more pollution-resistant. But that's not a major physical difference like the original subject of toe-less homonids.

"or bad life decisions [like do you drive too fast or while drunk or w/o seatbelts]."

So all of my life decisions are inherited? Scary. Let's end this topic, as it has nothing to do with dinosaurs.
from Brad, age 14, Woodville, ON, Canada; September 7, 2001


I recently watched a program on tv called Jurassica and it said that the Spinosaurus was a fast mover, as it often had to run for its life from other meat eating Dinosaurs. I was wondering if anyone can tell me what exactly Spinosaurus was running from? as I cant seem to find anything around at the time that seemed up to the task. Is this program wrong in its statement?. Were there bigger, meaner dinosaurs around in Africa at the time that would have fed on Spinosaurus? Sorry Spiney, I just cant see you taking out a T rex.....Nahhhhh!
from Graham T, age 1, ?, ?, uk; September 7, 2001


The claw was used of course used for fishing. Don`t say that proves he only ate fish,because he also was a scavenger. That is not stupid. I DID prove something. Didnt you read the sentence after that? At least you arent swearing at me..
from Joe, age 9, ?, ?, USA; September 7, 2001


Actually, I've noticed the HHH fan has lost his original debate: That HHH could beat T-Rex. He has stopped mentioning it entirely.
from ?, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 7, 2001


Why can't we just block the wrestling posts? Wrestling is anything but pseudo-dinosaur and it's just taking up bandwidth and really spoils the entire look of this webpage. To set up a page just for it in a KID's website is nuts! Can't we just moderate it when it gets out of hand, like it has now?
from ?, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 7, 2001
All of them - w about the ones that mention wrestling in reference to dinosaurs? Also, I generally don't give anonymous notes much consideration. Would you follow the instructions of an anonymous note sent to you? JC


If male t-rexes were threatened,they would fight.If male spinosaurus are bold they will kill a female and her young.
from Donovan c., age 12, ?, singapore, ?; September 7, 2001


A good name to call the wrestling post page is "Trash". Seriously some people should go get a better, more mature intrest and stop infringing on the rights of people here to have a revelant topic.
from Leonard, age 14, ?, ?, ?; September 7, 2001


"Like a raptor, Spino had a big claw on the 3rd claw."

That's an odd looking claw, and for all pratical purposes, must be virtually useless
from ?, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 7, 2001


Utahraptors could not jump much higher than your typical human distance of 3 feet. At nearly one ton and with such robust limbs, they were ill suited for jumping at such weights. Smaller raptors could jump better for they were like ten times lighter...and even then, they would not have managed more than seven feet. Face it, jumping is risky behaviour. Utahraptors have severly limited jump capacities.
from ?, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 7, 2001


"G'day, mates! This is Steve Irwin the Crocodile Hunter here! Today we're broadcasting from none other than Isla Sora! Site B! Ahead of us is none other the Mighty T.Rex. This is a female, Bambi, and they are the the dominant members of their species and this Sheila is no exception. Ain't she a beut? It looks like she's stalking something right now. Let's get closer to take a look."

"We want to be careful here mates, this ain't no simple croc mister! Bambi here weights 6 and-ar-half tons and has exceptional senses. But she sure as hell is faster than any croc! Bambi's powerful and graceful legs here can propel her to nearly 50 kilometers an hour! Crikey! I'll say that's much faster than you!"

"She must have first picked up the smell of the prey she's currently stalking mates, clearly the most interesting area lies in her head where her amazing olfactory sence resides. She can easily smell her prey from over ten miles away. Her hearing is also very good, she has very well-developed inner bones in her ears and specially shaped earholes to allow her to hear very low-frequencies of sound, she can pick you up way before you pick her, though as the biggest predator around, nobody's gonna hurt her (heh heh). These ears, capable of directional hearing, are also used in hunting. She'll hear her prey ways off mates."

"Her eyesight is also one of the best. She has well-developed, forward-facing eyes than gives her steroscopic vision. She is as keen-eyed as an eagle and can see her prey for miles. Poor Buggers. And don't stand still around her mates, for she can see ya' too when ya' are not moving. Remember, this is a real T.Rex here! Not the one from Jurassic Park (heh heh)"

"But my favourite part is her jaws, she has very strong jaws and teeth that makes her bite a real dingeroo! She can even chomp through ya' Land Rover if she wanted! Crikey! One bite from Bambi and its all over. We are looking at the undisputed champion of bite-force here mates!"

"And look at the way she carefully and slowly picks her feet and lands them softly as she stalks her prey. Bambi here like all T.Rexes have very well-muscled bodies and powerful legs. They are very agile and fast for their masive size. She's faster and stronger than any elephant you'll see. Now watch as she slows down, she is within striking distance of her prey..."

"Crikey! Look at her go! This is what I'm talking about folks! Look at Bambi run after her prey! She can be very fast when she's running for lunch her mates! Bambi's prey appears to be none other than the professional wrestler Hunter Hearst Helmsley! Crikey! She got him! Sorry mate, but ya' have to do better than doing all that mucking around and punching Bambi on the head to escape! Looks like it's all over for mister Helmsley, Bambi has torn him nearly into two by chomping into him with her powerful jaws. Crikey! That was something. Mister Helmsley never stood a chance, poor bugger...aint she a beut'?
from Steve Irwin the Crocodile Hunter, age -----, Isla Sorna, -----, -----; September 6, 2001


This entirly absurb match between T.Rex and HHH is doomed from the start to have only one outcome. HHH will lose no matter what, and that's because of his favourite qoute, he's doomed from the start:

Fact 1: HHH is the game
Fact 2: T.Rex is a big game hunter

Conclusion: Do I even need to tell you?

So much for wrestling qoutes, he should have picked up "Do you smell what the Rock's cooking?". Even though it's not much more intelligent, it avoids refrencing oneself towards being the prey of a certain Tyrannosaur. But then again, this phrase does involve cooking, which involves food, which might invoke a gastrointestinal reaction making the Tyrannosaur go out after prey, which might happen to be our unluckly wrestler.
from Iona, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 6, 2001


"Yes, but as I said, his intimidating size would easily be enough to scare off others from a kill. Dozens of dinosaur species could never afford to have simply lounged around for some Tyrannosaur somewhere to kill something, then try and scavenge what was left. Yes, a few packs of small dinosaurs would steal from T.rex, but not all of them!"

Of course, the converse argument is also true! Tyrannosaurus could not afford to wait around for some other smaller predators to make their kill before barging in. But that person does have a point, Tyrannosaurus was a discouraging factor for other animals to hunt. In fact, most cheethas only hunt when they are relatively sure there are no heynas or lions in the vicinity that may take thier kill. For smaller animals, the risk is more. They have less energy to expend and stand a higher risk of injury if they do try than the larger predators. I seriously suspect Tyrannosaurus would have barged in on a kill, if he had the chance, but I doubt the other animals would like to make this as large a chance for him. On the other hand, Tyrannosaurus didn't face that much pressure from other animals to give up his kill once he made it. And save for other Tyrannosaurids, he really didn't face too much competition at all! He would be the one making the move on most of his prey. I suspect the reason Tyrannosaurus got so big was mainly to exploit the larger herbivores more effectively, rather than to muscle in on a kill. Besides, no other animal could take on the larger and more dangerous herbivores as effectively as Tyrannosaurus. The raptors then did not exist in the sizes that could compete with him, and the other Tyrannosaurids were considerably smaller, leaving him to take down most of the larger animals. I think Tyrannosaurus would have been pretty much the top-predator making the kills in his area, much like the 'niche which Lions fill today, killing and taking kills when he deemed fit. Mostly a scavenger? I think that's extremely unlikely. Depending on others to kill you food for you, as seen by the interactions of predators in the African savannah, dosen't consutite a stable or large part of any animal's diet, save for vultures. Besides, a Tyrannosaurus kill would typically be large, in the muti-ton range, plenty of food to last many Tyrannosaurus for many days and still leave a sizeable portion for other carnivores.

On human evolution, I don't think it has stopped, conversely, it has contuined, but instead of giving up adaptation to survive in the wild, it is now giving us adaptations to maxamise our potential in the urban life. Which could be a bad thing, if you look at it some way. We are not getting a diffusion of genes that would traditionally be whiped out or given us a disadvantage in the wild as these individuals are now given an equal chance to survive. On the other hand, we are adapting to suit our urban lifestyle better. Lets see, Cauasian people who have been in the high-food, no-famine urban lifestyle are less prone to getting heart disease or other ill-effects associated with having a high-intake of food for a prolonge dperiod. Asians, who have been in this lifestyle for much shorter, are four times more vunerable to such ill-effects. It would seem to me that all the Cauasian individuals who showed increased vunerablilty to such ill-effects had been "removed", thus leaving the genes of those who are less vunerable to such to carry on. In short, we could be adapting to suit the urban lifestyle better, where those with the genes that would allow them to maximise their potential in the urban lifestyle have the advantage while traditional advantages that would have given us an advantage in the wild (good-eyesight...) are being diluted. Of course, we humans tend to keep our inviduals alive to the very last possible moment, so it maximizes everybody's potential to reach reproductive potential. In fact, the surivival rate for children reaching their adulthood is more than 90 percent, so in short, everybody gets to breed. Adaptation by natural selection, abbet to the urban lifestyle, is proceeding much slower of course.

The only genes that I can think of that will be eliminated quickly are those of the people who have the tendancy to remain single or childless due to personal reasons, which are quite common in our urban lifestyle. Prehaps in a few generations the genes which infulence such behaviour would be lost?
from Honkie Tong, age 17, ?, ?, ?; September 6, 2001


Obviously the discussions are going to be all about JP3. So here's my bit...
First of all the Pteranodon. While the creature itself looked good enough (save for the absence of fur and the body looking a little too buff) a few laws of bio physics were tiptoed around. For starters you would probably have more of a chance being attacked by a pelican than a pterosaur, as such a piscivorous creature would not risk damaging its delicate wing membranes trying to get its toothless beak around fighting, kicking young boys. The young in the nest would have also found it impossible to tear apart such a meal while it was still alive.The arial acrobatics were far beyond the ability of a large pterosaur (admittedly I've never seen one flying about, but when you have an animal with a seven meter wing span and a tiny keel for muscle attachment, that doesnt leave much power for flapping. They were most likly long distance gliders, smacking into the sides of the avairy).
As for the cliche of carrying peole away in their talons (deep sigh, well you dont need me to tell you about weight ratios.

from Shaun, age 24, brisbane, qld, australia; September 6, 2001


Hi everyone, this is such a cool site. I'm currently studying to be a primary school teacher and my 7 yo son LOVES dinosaurs. I'm doing a Powerpoint presentation on dinosaurs for a university assignment and I'm trying to find some dinosaur animations and sounds. Can anyone point me in the right direction? I'm not having much luck. Keep up the good work guys!
from Maria, age 34, Sydney, NSW, Australia; September 6, 2001


Brad, I was hoping you were joking because you seem like a really logical person. I don't see how natural selection can ever end for any life form. I agree with Jason -- but evolution is more than physical differences, altho his example was excellent.

"Where's the pressure to evolve?" There are still plenty of evolutionary pressures, even for those of us have cushy lives -- pressures like new incurable diseases, the unhealthy effects of pollution, or bad life decisions [like do you drive too fast or while drunk or w/o seatbelts]. Its hard to tell exactly why, but people have always had different reproduction rates and different death rates - even among the terminally cushy.. Also what about the millions of people with difficult lives ?-- like people in famine prone countries with closed borders.

"Disadvantages, like poorer eyesight or bad teeth, are now correctable." tell that to people who die young, have horrible diseases, or cant reproduce. Science helps a lot, but not everything is correctible. Even if we can make the genes for all the bad things go away and fix every problem, that will be a huge genetic change for the species (and evolution in progress).

"Genetic advantages aren't required, because invention and technology has solved many problems that animals face: how to get food, how to defend yourself, etc." Modern inventions have solved a lot of problems but also change the gene pool -- not keep it the same. Like, after cars were invented, people with slower reactions were more likely to die in car crashes, and the genes for higer speed reactions are probably more common now. And what about the obvious gene pool changers like pre-birth genetic testing will make? Changing the gene pool by design IS evolution -- and will have many unpredicted consequences.

I know that these are small changes in the gene pool -- but over a long time, different rates of death and reproduction among a population are what make evolution happen -- except to punct. equil. people -- and I hate jay gould. Our evolution probably won't develop dramatic looking dinosaur claws on our feet, but will probably develop things like different mental abilities that are needed in the modern world. Its a lot like the differences btw us and neanderthals and chimps.
from Caroline, age ?, Mukilteo, WA, USA; September 4, 2001


Jurassic park totally ruined the true image of velociraptor. they made them to smart, to fast and to big. Velociraptor was a very smart dinosaur but not as smart as a chimp like they said in JP. They were fast but not as fast as a cheetah, morely about 35mph, not 60. And velociraptor was 6 feet long and 2 feet high. In JP they made them more the size of deinonychus. In the first jurassic park they found a velociraptor in montana, but velociraptors are only found in china and mongolia. Its ok that they used velociraptor in the movie but they made them more fictional then fact. why didn't they just use deinonychus. Deinonychus was that size, it came from montana, it wasn't that smart or that fast, but, how meny dinosaurs were. Deinonychus was also stronger and probably more terrifying
from KC, age 14, mocksville, N,C, U,S,A; September 6, 2001


"It's hard to say, but T.Rex would have had less restrictions about hunting as there was nothing that could have driven him away from a kill (except another T.Rex), thus he was free to hunt as much as he wanted without fear of having to give it up to another bunch of predators and being driven away after expending so much energy but have reped nothing in return."

Yes, but as I said, his intimidating size would easily be enough to scare off others from a kill. Dozens of dinosaur species could never afford to have simply lounged around for some Tyrannosaur somewhere to kill something, then try and scavenge what was left. Yes, a few packs of small dinosaurs would steal from T.rex, but not all of them!

"Brad, I hope you were joking when you said - "Civilization is the end of evolution." Were you?"

Civilization is most definitely not the the end of evolution. If we were to move to another planet with say, more gravity, and had the time the time to change, we would become differrent. More squat and muscular, with different food needs.
from Jason, age 13, Dayton, Ohio, USA; September 6, 2001


"T rexcould easiley lose to a pack ove 4 Utah Raptors that are at like 23 feet"

Tyrannosaurus rex could not easily lose to Utahraptor because they are not known from the same age. Tyrannosaurus lived millions of years after the last Utahraptor.

"see T rex cant kill them all with one bite he goes for one
the one jumps on and the attack begins"

Or the tyrannosaur could just chase the Utahraptor pack away. They would probably be intimidated by the larger theropod, and not want to risk fighting. Why would the Utahraptor attack the T. rex?

"see Raptors were the smartest dinosaur not the T rex so that means stop thinking that T rex was the greatest hunter the greatest hunters were Raptors,Deiontachuys,Utah Raptor and ecspilcilly the Mega Raptor"

Please, pay attention here! It's not "Utah Raptor" and "Mega Raptor". It's Utahraptor and Megaraptor. Each name is just one word. I think the incorrect way of writing them looks really annoying, even if you think it looks cool. It also suggests that you did no reaserch for your theories.

"see and the Mega Raptor and the Utah Raptor if they both hunted in packs they easilly beat anything they want to see."

Although there isn't any evidence to suggest that they actually were pack animals.
from Brad, age 14, Woodville, ON, Canada; September 6, 2001


"where is there heaps of info on utahraptors, dromeosaurs and is there such thing as a velossor raptor (however you spell it) and if there is, any good sites on them?"

There's no velossor raptor, but there is a dinosaur called _Velociraptor_. However, it was quite unlike the monsters depicted in Jurassic Park 3. Don Lessem and David Peters have an excellent book called _Raptors: The Nestiest Dinosaurs_, with good informations and really fantastic pictures. No 'raptor-based sites come to mind, but you should be able to find enough information from general dinosaur sites.
from Brad, age 14, Woodville, ON, Canada; September 6, 2001


"At 52 ft long,18 ft tall, and weighing 10 tons, he was
bigger than a Tyrannosaurus Rex."

And the source of your information would be...?

"Like a raptor, Spino had a big claw on the 3rd claw."

Now this I don't understand, Dr. Joe.
from Brad, age 14, Woodville, ON, Canada; September 6, 2001


"Brad, I hope you were joking when you said - "Civilization is the end of evolution." Were you?"

No, we've beaten natural selection and we're stuck here. Genetic advantages aren't required, because invention and technology has solved many problems that animals face: how to get food, how to defend yourself, etc. Disadvantages, like poorer eyesight or bad teeth, are now correctable. Where's the pressure to evolve? Also, our population is huge and we can travel widely: No evolution of us if the puctuated equillibrium theory is valid. Why do you hope I was joking? Even if I'm wrong and a new specis of homonid does rise from our own, you wouldn't have anything to gain from it.
from Brad, age 14, Woodville, ON, Canada; September 6, 2001


Brad, I hope you were joking when you said - "Civilization is the end of evolution." Were you?
from Caroline, age ?, Mukilteo, WA, USA; September 4, 2001


T rexcould easiley lose to a pack ove 4 Utah Raptors that are at like 23 feet see T rex cant kill them all with one bite he goes for one
the one jumps on and the attack begins see Raptors were the smartest dinosaur not the T rex so that means stop thinking that T rex was the
greatest hunter the greatest hunters were Raptors,Deiontachuys,Utah Raptor
and ecspilcilly the Mega Raptor see and the Mega Raptor and the Utah Raptor if they both hunted in packs they easilly beat anything they want to see.

from ????, age ????, ????, ????, Uranus; September 6, 2001


"Upon seeing the trailer for "Valley of the T.Rex" on discovery, I am left puzzled as to what they mean by the statement "a T.Rex that looks unlike any they've seen before"....any thoughts?"

I didn't see that show, but it may be a reference to exceptionally good preservation or completeness of remains rather than a new species of Tyrannosaurus.
from Brad, age 14, Fenelon Falls, ON, Canada; September 6, 2001


Spinosaurus was a very powerful creature. At 52 ft long,18 ft tall, and weighing 10 tons, he was bigger than a Tyrannosaurus Rex. Even though if with a T.Rex,he would vave not always won. You see,T.rex had jaws wit use 3,000 pounds of force. on the other hand, Spino`s main weapon was`nt his teeth, it was his claws. Like a raptor, Spino had a big claw on the 3rd claw. So it pretty even. And the only reason they would want to fight is over food. Not whos tougher than who. ( My computer is acting stupidly.)
from Dr. Joe S., age Who cares?, I have 13 Phd`s, Why would you care?, United States of America; September 6, 2001


Though I really hate tyrannosaurus and was very sad when he won the giganotosaurus debate, I'm still gonna say that he's gonna beat HHH easily, and if that's what it takes, Bruce Lee will beat him too. Why? Because WRESTLING STINKS!

Alright, lets look at this sheer display of buffoon-ery. You have a bunch of "tough as nails" guys, real "manly men" who wear skintight bikini's and run around grabbing other manly men in bikini's. So much about this "sport" (exhibition as I call it) disses me off.

First of all, its fake and anyone with an IQ of over 50 (not the key demographic of people who watch wrestling, I know) know this and accepts it, but there are still a few arses who think it is real, and will insist to the death that it is not fake. Come on, how stupid can you be? Look at the "game" and tell me its not fake. When someone "hits" another person, they come MAYBE within a 2 feet of actually touching the person, and of course it is always necessary to stomp your foot on the ground when "hitting" someone else. This I do not under stand. Every time one guy hits another, they stamp the ground as if they were trying to break through the floor.

Second the fact that this is nothing more than a theater production, a play if you will, and people regard it as a sport. You watch wrestling on TV, you watch baseball on TV, and you watch TV shows on TV. Wrestling has more in common with the TV show than it does with the baseball. It has writers, it is filmed before a live studio audience, it is a bunch of people playing characters, and it has a looping story arc. Actually it is more like a soap opera. What really disses me off is when I see people wearing stupid t-shirts sporting wrestling images and slogans such as "suck it" and "do you smell what the rock is cookin?" and "layeth the smacketh" It might as well say "gay-eth the smacketh." Seriously, how many different t-shirts can one produce, all of which are basically the same thing? Change a slogan here, put a different wrestler on there, boom. Make more money.

Third, the people who watch this show. As far as I can tell, it appeals mainly to the worthless part of society. The trash, the simple, the imbeciles, and the ignoramus. These people are stupid and worthless enough as it is, without adding this exhibition to their lives. It only confuses them. They see it on TV, think it is real, become stupider, go out, spend money on shirts and stay in the lower class forever because they spend all their money on shirts and 80 dollar tickets to go see their heroes in the flesh. Alright, it is good that these people now have SOMETHING but couldn't we try to educate them a little, introduce some real culture to them rather than throwing this garbage into their faces. The reason it appeals to these people is because they are idiotic and stupid and so is wrestling. I have also noticed that people who are NOT any of the aforementioned like wrestling. Middle/upper class white kids who have never hit another person in their life. They like it becau! se the brutes they watch religiously are living out their dreams. Of being rebellious, of talking smack, and being cool (though I disagree that wrestlers do any of those things, since they are just reading a script). Still, the white kids in the suburbs who watch this really should be informed that they have opportunities that are not available to many people in this country, and if they wanna sit on their butts and watch wrestling they should give up their home, hopes for higher education, and go live in a trailer park and watch TV all day.

Fourth, the kids who like this really diss me off. I mean like, the young kids, like 8 or 9 who watch and wear the shirts but don't understand square 1 about what they are watching. This shows how what a parent does and watched is very much an influence they are on their young child and when a kid who is 8 watched his dad watch on TV guys going around beating each other up, the kid will say "well, my dad likes it go I guess it's OK" and rather than being a good parent and telling their kid that it is bad and wrong, the parent sees it as a common interest and includes their child in the propaganda. These are the kids who grow up to be murderers.

Finally, the actual "wrestlers" diss me off the most of all. These are a bunch of men (and women) who make millions of dollars pretending to beat each other up. How is this legal? This is probably the stupidest thing ever to be involved with the American economy. These idiots are in fact so incredibly stupid, that they think their characters are real. The other day I was watching E! News Daily, and there was an interview with "the rock" and he is talking about a character he is playing in am upcoming movie. When asked what the difference is between the character, and the rock he replied "the character is a fake character in a movie, the rock is real" Hate to burst your bubble but the rock is a fake character in a TV show. In 5 years when the show is cancelled or you are not popular anymore (does anyone remember the "ultimate warrior" from the early 90's? neither do I) you will be out on your ass, begging for money in the street. It is only then that these people will finally e! ntertain me. And HHH will soon be there, if he's not killed first by tyrannosaurus or Bruce Lee.

HHH STINKS, WRESTLING STINKS, they only rule in the the lamest, most retarded, vile, twisted and perveted parts of the human imagination. Let's cut out these lamers here and get on with the scientific talk.
from Spinofan, age 14, Quantico, Virginia, United States of America; September 6, 2001


T.Rex would kill an elephant easily. When T.Rex was first discovered and people did not know when it lived, scientist actually classified it as a predator of elephants! And I've seen lions kill a full-grown elephant before! You gotta be kidding me! Yes! It's true, juz read National Geographic! A T.Rex is far meaner than a lion...bye bye elephant and rhino!

Are you kidding? T.Rex simply outclasses a rhino and elephant one-on-one!
from ?, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 6, 2001


Let's see... Tyrannosaurus, like all predators wouldn't attack anything unless he had the advantage of surprise and got in the first bite. And was almost certianly much faster and more agile than your typical rhino. My guess is, if a single flesh-rending bite from Tyrannosaurus can kill a 9-ton Triceratops quite fast, it would have an effect 5 times worse on a 2-ton rhino. Chero, rhino meat anyone? A 2-ton rhino is a nice snack for Tyrannosaurus.
from Ibanez, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 6, 2001


where is there heaps of info on utahraptors, dromeosaurs and is there such thing as a velossor raptor (however you spell it) and if there is, any good sites on them?
from k e, age 13, ?, syd, aust; September 6, 2001


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