[Taxacom] Thanksgiving for Velociraptor

Kenneth Kinman kennethkinman at webtv.net
Wed Nov 23 22:16:27 CST 2011

Dear All,
      What would a Velociraptor in Mongolia have regarded as a
Thanksgiving feast?  Perhaps a weak (sick?) adult Protoceratops.  But
attacking a healthy adult Protoceratops would have been risky,
especially in the case of the famous "Fighting Dinosaurs" fossil, where
both prey and predator died attacking each other.  
       A safer bet for a Velociraptor feast would be an unattended nest
of Protoceratops nestlings.  And the first known nest of Protoceratops
has been discovered in Mongolia and described in a paper published this
week (see weblink to a news story below).  It contained the skeletons of
15 young Protoceratops nestlings that would have provided quite a feast
for one or more hungry Velociraptors.  But these particular nestlings
apparently died when a sandstorm buried their nest (thus preserving them
for much latter human paleontologists instead).  What a waste of a good
meal from a Velociraptor's perspective, but a luck break for
paleontology.  From our perspective, a baby Protoceratops woud probably
not taste very good compared to a fat and juicy turkey bred by humans to
suit our modern tastes.             
        --------Happy Holidays,


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