Throughout their entire history, dinosaurs and their prey co-I evolved in a mutually stimulating arms race. A new defense plan among the plant-eaters would give rise to a new mode of attack among the meat-eaters. (china dinosaur factory)In the previous chapter we met the armor-clad tribes. Here we shall review the parade of unarmored plant-eaters and the evolution of their defensive equipment. These dinosaurs with naked hides defended their vulnerable bodies with slashing claws and lashing tails against wave after wave of meat-eating species.
The earliest wave of big herbivores evolved during the late epochs of the Triassic and Early Jurassic periods. These were the long-necked anchisaurs, distant uncles of the brontosaurs. Anchisaurs displayed no body armor, but they wielded huge curved claws on their powerfully muscled thumbs and long pointed claws on their stout hind feet. (life size dinosaur)These plant-eaters therefore had defensive claws both front and rear, a combination unusual today. So wrestling with an anchisaur was a dangerous business. Modern anteaters have hooklike claws on their forefeet, while the most dangerous modern ground bird, the cassowary (a two-hundred-pound flightless creature from New Guinea), has a big hind claw.
Together, ant-eaters and cassowaries demonstrate how anchisaurs fought. (life like dinosaur)Living species of anteaters grow only up to 150 pounds maximum weight, but their hooked foreclaws are potent weapons of defense against jaguars. When angry and cornered, the anteater stands erect on its hind feet and tail and lashes out with left and right swings of its foreclaws.(animatronic dinosaur costume)Knowledgeable zoologists take great care in the face of this attack, for if the anteater strikes full force in a vulnerable area, such as the stomach, its great claws can effect a full disembowel-ment.