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Hot Topic (More than 10 Replies) Dinos shrank fast to become birds (Read 2,698 times)
Demos
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Dinos shrank fast to become birds
Aug 2nd, 2014 at 1:50pm
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Dinosaur line that became birds shrank incredibly fast, study finds

By Amina Khan, Los Angeles Times, 08/02/2014

How did birds emerge from a lineage of large dinosaurs whose clawed feet were planted firmly on the ground? Size really matters, according to a team of scientists that traced the incredibly fast shrinkage along 50 million years of ancient avian evolution.

The findings, published in the journal Science, show how the continuous miniaturization of this dinosaur lineage allowed for a whole host of physical changes that made powered flight possible.

Paleontologists have long known that birds evolved from dinosaurs known as theropods, a group that included the formidable Tyrannosaurus rex. But there’s been considerable argument over whether the branch of theropods leading to birds really was quickly shrinking until the earliest birds emerged roughly 160 million years ago.

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Pretty cool
  
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Mercy For All
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Re: Dinos shrank fast to become birds
Reply #1 - Aug 2nd, 2014 at 3:48pm
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We still haven't figured out how they carried their own weight, have we?

(And by "we" I don't mean "you and me.")
  

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Demos
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Re: Dinos shrank fast to become birds
Reply #2 - Aug 2nd, 2014 at 10:04pm
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I have no idea. I have a complete and utter ignorance of that debate.
  
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Queshank
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Re: Dinos shrank fast to become birds
Reply #3 - Sep 4th, 2014 at 7:56pm
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Mercy For All wrote on Aug 2nd, 2014 at 3:48pm:
We still haven't figured out how they carried their own weight, have we?

(And by "we" I don't mean "you and me.")


Sure we have!  Or I have anyway. 

I remember years ago (on Fidonet not these boards) I floated the idea that the earth was actually like a balloon covered in paper mache' and it expanded over time and that's how Pangaea broke up into the continents.  (and then I challenged Christians to prove me wrong ... I was young)

Dinosaurs were able to support their body weight because when the earth was smaller, there was less gravitational pull weighing them down.

It all seems so obvious now doesn't it!?

Queshank
  
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Queshank
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Re: Dinos shrank fast to become birds
Reply #4 - Sep 4th, 2014 at 7:58pm
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Incidentally for whatever reason I have never once clicked on the science boards here.  I had no idea there were discussions here.  That's an interesting article Demos.  As a kid I wanted to be a paleontologist.

Queshank
  
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Mercy For All
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Re: Dinos shrank fast to become birds
Reply #5 - Sep 5th, 2014 at 12:39pm
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Sure we have!  Or I have anyway. 

I remember years ago (on Fidonet not these boards) I floated the idea that the earth was actually like a balloon covered in paper mache' and it expanded over time and that's how Pangaea broke up into the continents.  (and then I challenged Christians to prove me wrong ... I was young)

Dinosaurs were able to support their body weight because when the earth was smaller, there was less gravitational pull weighing them down.

It all seems so obvious now doesn't it!?

Queshank


Size is irrelevant to gravity.  Mass is relevant.  A smaller Earth of the same mass would exert as much gravity.  That's not a solution.
  

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Queshank
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Re: Dinos shrank fast to become birds
Reply #6 - Sep 5th, 2014 at 5:24pm
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Mercy For All wrote on Sep 5th, 2014 at 12:39pm:
Size is irrelevant to gravity.  Mass is relevant.  A smaller Earth of the same mass would exert as much gravity.  That's not a solution.


Two things:

1- Who says Earth's mass has remained constant?

2- Dont try to confuse me with facts and logic! 

Queshank
  
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Mercy For All
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Re: Dinos shrank fast to become birds
Reply #7 - Sep 5th, 2014 at 9:23pm
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Two things:

1- Who says Earth's mass has remained constant?


And that's a possibility.  Off the top of my head, I'm not sure of the dating of the moon (I think it's too old), but consider if it would be the result of a massive collision, and a whole chunk of "earth matter" was knocked off to combine with whatever collided with the earth, to eventually coalesce into the moon, effectively lowering the total mass of the earth itself...

Likely?  Probably not.  But an idea.

Actually, I think there are two strikes against that:

1)  The tides generated by the moon would be necessary for the rise of the dinosaurs...to transfer nutrients from sea to land and vice versa.

2)  There were very large mammals after the dinosaurs were gone as well.

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2- Dont try to confuse me with facts and logic!


Grin
  

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Mercy For All
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Re: Dinos shrank fast to become birds
Reply #8 - Sep 5th, 2014 at 9:27pm
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The problems are more complicated than I thought:

http://www.dinosaurtheory.com/big_dinosaur.html


  • Inadequate bone strength to support the largest dinosaurs
  • Inadequate muscle strength to lift and move the largest dinosaurs
  • Unacceptable high blood pressure and stress on the heart of the tallest dinosaurs
  • Aerodynamics principles showing that the pterosaurs should not have flown
  

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Mercy For All
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Re: Dinos shrank fast to become birds
Reply #9 - Sep 6th, 2014 at 11:01am
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Interesting, but others have thought of the same thing, Queshank, but speculating about increasing diameter and mass (using both dinosaurs and continental drift as clues):

http://www.dinox.org/expandingearth.html
  

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