To the editor:
Internationally-known paleontologist Philip Currie spoke Feb. 2 at Okanagan College’s Vernon campus on his Dino Gang theory.
Currie is a proponent of the bird-dinosaur link and “feathered dinosaurs.”
In a paper published in Science (Oct. 26/12) re: The “feathered dinosaur” Ornithomimus, fibrous impressions in Alberta sandstone were interpreted as feathers on the forewings. Yet the rock impressions of the “feathers” consist mostly of straight lines that look nothing like flight feathers.
The fact that the specimens were found in Upper Cretaceous means true birds were already flying around when Ornithomimus lived, and the adult specimen exhibits the “dinosaur death pose” indicating suffocation in water.
New Scientist (online Nov. 23/11) reported when researchers placed seven plucked chickens into cool, fresh water, their necks arched and their heads were thrown back within seconds. Sustained immersion of the chickens for up to a month slightly increased the severity of the pose, but the major movement of the head occurred almost immediately.
This is evidence dinosaurs were buried in a flood—a big one.
The logo for the proposed Philip J. Currie Dinosaur Museum (curriemuseum.ca) shows a Troodon formosus—a small carnivorous dinosaur similar to a Velociraptor—in a death pose.
Dr. Carl Werner interviewed Currie for his first of two documentaries, Evolution: The Grand Experiment (2009) http://thegrandexperiment.com.
Currie told Werner in a July 1997 interview: “…Centrosaurus bone beds that are spread over a distance of about five miles in Dinosaur Provincial Park…In fact, there has been some attempt in recent years to calculate how many individuals we’re looking at in each one of these bone beds, and it does exceed thousands of animals. We may be looking at herds of as many as 10,000 animals.”
Currie repeated the 10,000 figure in Vernon, saying “as many as 10,000 animals died in a single event.”
Werner will be speaking at UBC Okanagan: Feb. 14: Why I Abandoned Evolution (2 p.m., SCI 337); Living Fossils (7 p.m., Fipke 204).
All lectures are free.