footprint associates

From: bivalve <bivalve@mail.davidson.alumlink.com>
Date: Wed Apr 07 2004 - 15:40:53 EDT

I'm not sure how raising the issue of what dinosaurs ate helps the mat idea. If you have sauropods eating the mat they are riding on, the mat, the dinosaurs, and the model are all sunk. Taphonomically, sandstone is not the best for preserving plant material, since it can allow water flow. Also, it suggests higher energy conditions, which would wash plant material further downstream than shell or bone. (Plus, they cite reports of plant material squashed in dino footprints, so I'm doubtful that the plant material is as mysteriously rare as they claim).

The ICR note (http://www.icr.org/pubs/imp/imp-370.htm) tries to paint conventional geology as a conspiracy theory. Unfortunately for any hopes of making a good impression on me, a lot of their argument relies on fossil mollusks. One of the attempts to discredit conventional geology is the Brontosaurus-Apatosaurus name change, yet they use Unio as the genus for the bivalves, an error corrected much earlier. Likewise, they refer to "the prosobranch family", when Prosobranchia is a subclass (rejected by modern classifications as paraphyletic). The taphonomic arguments are inconsistent and not necessarily accurate, either.

Complaining that the picture of Jurassic dinosaurs doesn't have any mammals in it is silly. There's no need to portray all the species. Jurassic mammals would hardly be visible at the scale of the picture. As Jurassic mammals are evolutionarily intermediate between synapsid reptiles and more advanced mammals, I doubt that including mammals in the picture would make them happy, either.

The sedimentological arguments don't look very good to me, either, but I would need to know more details about the deposit to assess details.

    Dr. David Campbell
    Old Seashells
    University of Alabama
    Biodiversity & Systematics
    Dept. Biological Sciences
    Box 870345
    Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0345 USA
    bivalve@mail.davidson.alumlink.com

That is Uncle Joe, taken in the masonic regalia of a Grand Exalted Periwinkle of the Mystic Order of Whelks-P.G. Wodehouse, Romance at Droitgate Spa
Received on Wed Apr 7 15:41:17 2004

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