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(Inside Science)   New theory suggests that dinosaurs reached enormous size because of their "squishy joints". Lead researcher Prof M. Jane comments "duuuude, did I really say that? Man, I am so baked right now"   (insidescience.org) divider line 18
    More: Interesting, dinosaurs, blue whales, humeri, Diplodocus, Royal Veterinary College, mammals, Apatosaurus, gigantism  
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953 clicks; posted to Geek » on 25 Oct 2013 at 7:30 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



18 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2013-10-25 07:41:22 AM  
I'm not messing around, man.

You could take that dino-joint and throw it against the wall and it would just stick there and not move. No lie, man. These joints were that sticky.

They called them purple fuzzy thunderfark joints. You'll never find dino-joints around here like that. Not in this town. But in California? They're everywhere man
 
2013-10-25 07:44:55 AM  
4.bp.blogspot.com
 
2013-10-25 07:54:45 AM  
It is interesting that dinosaurs were so huge, and no land animals really are that large today, with some exceptions.  Makes you wonder what would have happened if their extinction event never occurred.
 
2013-10-25 08:07:49 AM  
www.survivingateacherssalary.com
 
2013-10-25 08:19:54 AM  

Frozboz: It is interesting that dinosaurs were so huge, and no land animals really are that large today, with some exceptions.  Makes you wonder what would have happened if their extinction event never occurred.


Another extinction event would've killed them off, like the ice age for example.
 
2013-10-25 08:36:26 AM  

AntonChigger: Frozboz: It is interesting that dinosaurs were so huge, and no land animals really are that large today, with some exceptions.  Makes you wonder what would have happened if their extinction event never occurred.

Another extinction event would've killed them off, like the ice age for example.


Or like habitat lose due to human activity. Elephants, gnus, bison, etc. are all having a hard time now and are possibly headed to extinction because we've disrupted their food supply. Now imagine a giant creature that needs 10x as much grazing land as an elephant.
 
2013-10-25 08:44:14 AM  

MrBallou: AntonChigger: Frozboz: It is interesting that dinosaurs were so huge, and no land animals really are that large today, with some exceptions.  Makes you wonder what would have happened if their extinction event never occurred.

Another extinction event would've killed them off, like the ice age for example.

Or like habitat lose due to human activity. Elephants, gnus, bison, etc. are all having a hard time now and are possibly headed to extinction because we've disrupted their food supply. Now imagine a giant creature that needs 10x as much grazing land as an elephant.


Not necessarily. We could always Flintstone them, and work them into our economy. It is not like one household car takes up less land than a grazing ten grazing elephants. in fact it probably takes like 2000 times, if you count oil fields, fuel production, all the roads it uses, garages, parking spaces and gas stations. If we had vehicles that could haul ten times as much as an elephant and move twice as fast, we could probably abandon cars immediately. So kill dinos? No. Enslave dinos? Heck yes.
 
2013-10-25 09:00:51 AM  
i1.ytimg.com

But what about the leading theory on Brontosauruses?
 
2013-10-25 09:39:23 AM  
As a farker currently assembling an Apatosaurus cast for a customer in japan, I'm getting a kick....

/I better not have to resize all the joints
//Damn you Bonnan!
 
2013-10-25 10:06:08 AM  

Bennie Crabtree: MrBallou: AntonChigger: Frozboz: It is interesting that dinosaurs were so huge, and no land animals really are that large today, with some exceptions.  Makes you wonder what would have happened if their extinction event never occurred.

Another extinction event would've killed them off, like the ice age for example.

Or like habitat lose due to human activity. Elephants, gnus, bison, etc. are all having a hard time now and are possibly headed to extinction because we've disrupted their food supply. Now imagine a giant creature that needs 10x as much grazing land as an elephant.

Not necessarily. We could always Flintstone them, and work them into our economy. It is not like one household car takes up less land than a grazing ten grazing elephants. in fact it probably takes like 2000 times, if you count oil fields, fuel production, all the roads it uses, garages, parking spaces and gas stations. If we had vehicles that could haul ten times as much as an elephant and move twice as fast, we could probably abandon cars immediately. So kill dinos? No. Enslave dinos? Heck yes.


You're forgetting one important fact: dinosaur turds. EV. RY. WHUR.

The resources to make my car and keep it running take up a good chunk of land, but on the other hand, one of those dinosaur dumps is probably the same size as my car
 
2013-10-25 10:12:08 AM  

Bennie Crabtree: MrBallou: AntonChigger: Frozboz: It is interesting that dinosaurs were so huge, and no land animals really are that large today, with some exceptions.  Makes you wonder what would have happened if their extinction event never occurred.

Another extinction event would've killed them off, like the ice age for example.

Or like habitat lose due to human activity. Elephants, gnus, bison, etc. are all having a hard time now and are possibly headed to extinction because we've disrupted their food supply. Now imagine a giant creature that needs 10x as much grazing land as an elephant.

Not necessarily. We could always Flintstone them, and work them into our economy. It is not like one household car takes up less land than a grazing ten grazing elephants. in fact it probably takes like 2000 times, if you count oil fields, fuel production, all the roads it uses, garages, parking spaces and gas stations. If we had vehicles that could haul ten times as much as an elephant and move twice as fast, we could probably abandon cars immediately. So kill dinos? No. Enslave dinos? Heck yes.


It is sad that I'll never ride a pterodactyl in to work.
 
2013-10-25 10:15:16 AM  

Frozboz: It is interesting that dinosaurs were so huge, and no land animals really are that large today, with some exceptions.  Makes you wonder what would have happened if their extinction event never occurred.


Atmosphere is different. We also don't have the giant insects of those days.
 
2013-10-25 10:29:09 AM  

BolloxReader: Frozboz: It is interesting that dinosaurs were so huge, and no land animals really are that large today, with some exceptions.  Makes you wonder what would have happened if their extinction event never occurred.

Atmosphere is different. We also don't have the giant insects of those days.


I've always heard that the prevailing theory was a much higher oxygen concentration, but I'm no paleontologist, biologist, or zoologist.
 
2013-10-25 10:36:41 AM  

BolloxReader: Frozboz: It is interesting that dinosaurs were so huge, and no land animals really are that large today, with some exceptions.  Makes you wonder what would have happened if their extinction event never occurred.

Atmosphere is different. We also don't have the giant insects of those days.


Dinosaur-era bugs weren't too much different than today's, size wise. If you want the huge roaches and 2 foot wingspan dragonflies, you have to go back 150 million years before T. rex.
 
2013-10-25 10:51:20 AM  

Dinodork: BolloxReader: Frozboz: It is interesting that dinosaurs were so huge, and no land animals really are that large today, with some exceptions.  Makes you wonder what would have happened if their extinction event never occurred.

Atmosphere is different. We also don't have the giant insects of those days.

Dinosaur-era bugs weren't too much different than today's, size wise. If you want the huge roaches and 2 foot wingspan dragonflies, you have to go back 150 million years before T. rex.


While we have you here...do paleontologists think that those giant insects had different organs than modern insects, or that their environment supported their current physiology on a larger scale?

Forgive my ignorance, but IIRC, modern insects lack lungs.  How were the "supersized" insects able to transport oxygen passively through their larger frames?  Are the muscle fibers of modern insects powerful enough to allow flight if scaled up, or did they have to be fundamentally different?

Feel free to ramble if you know anything cool about the giant bug era.
 
2013-10-25 11:03:18 AM  
I'm just a vertebrate paleontologist, so my encounters with fossil bugs is only sorta tangental. IIRC from my Biology of Spiders class, insects use spriacles, basically tubes, to bring atmospheric gasses all over the body and deliver oxygen direct to organs and such. Nothing as fancy as a spider's book lungs.

Anyway, the theorized higher oxygen content of the Carboniferous period results in higher oxygen saturation, making the fairly inefficient spiracle system a little more so. So with the same effort, you get a lot more go-gas, and you can grow larger (higher metaboloc cost).

Now it's interesting to notice something: During the Carboniferous, we have pretty much the opposite of what's happening in our atmosphere ever since. Plants had evolved into massive trees, however ther were't really any decomposers evolved to process cellulose/plant waste. So a tree grows, turns lots and lots of CO2 into wood and oxygen, dies, and jut sits there as a carbon sink (that we're now re-releasing into the atmosphere in coal-fired powerplants) , Lather, rinse, repeat over millions of years and you can start to see where all the oxygen in the atmosphere comes from at that time. By the Permian, it's no longer an issue.
 
2013-10-25 11:18:42 AM  

born_yesterday: Dinodork: BolloxReader: Frozboz: It is interesting that dinosaurs were so huge, and no land animals really are that large today, with some exceptions.  Makes you wonder what would have happened if their extinction event never occurred.

Atmosphere is different. We also don't have the giant insects of those days.

Dinosaur-era bugs weren't too much different than today's, size wise. If you want the huge roaches and 2 foot wingspan dragonflies, you have to go back 150 million years before T. rex.

While we have you here...do paleontologists think that those giant insects had different organs than modern insects, or that their environment supported their current physiology on a larger scale?

Forgive my ignorance, but IIRC, modern insects lack lungs.  How were the "supersized" insects able to transport oxygen passively through their larger frames?  Are the muscle fibers of modern insects powerful enough to allow flight if scaled up, or did they have to be fundamentally different?

Feel free to ramble if you know anything cool about the giant bug era.


I know nothing.  But, if O2 concentrations were higher 200 MYA, then it'd be easier for oxygen to diffuse into lungless critters.

They also may have had some adaptations to increase their surface area, making oxygen diffusion easier

What I would like to know is, did their mitochondria process oxygen essentially the same way?  That is, if their cells needed no more oxygen (meaning no more ATP) than modern insects, a higher atmospheric level of oxygen would make them bigger.  But if these biochemical processes are concentration dependent, then you might anticipate cells to get more "greedy" with higher levels of O2 (meaning they require more O2 for the same processes as modern insects), at the expense of the organism's size.  Of course, this would be selection dependent, and if greedy cells come at a fitness cost, then they'd be selected against.  OMG I WANT TO DO EXPERIMENTAL EVOLUTION ON INSECTS AT DIFFERENT CONCENTRATIONS OF OXYGEN SO BADLY RIGHT NOW.
 
2013-10-25 03:33:21 PM  
images3.cliqueclack.com
 
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