Gosling Hypotheses

from observing Anser canadensis

(-Apologies for this page not being about someone named Gosling [- inventor of a programming language.] I'm aware that the search listings may be confused by this.)
  1. A hypothesis of evolutionarily developmental wing usage in the evidently flightless (proto-)bird Archaeopteryx lithographica.
    1. Goslings are flightless (wings are rudimentary until they and their feathers grow out.)
    2. Archaeopteryx was evidently flightless despite wings (Ref: The Hot-Blooded Dinosaurs) owing to i wing feather bases not anchored in bone   ii breastbone too small for sufficient wing muscle attachment   iii teeth, heavy bones, lots of leg suggests excessive weight for flying.
    3. Goslings, around the second through fourth weeks after hatching, use their flaplike featherless wings to balance themselves while jumping or scrambling.   - As observed on sloping ground with artificial obstacles too high to balance themselves while jumping or scrambling.
    4. Evolutionary development (e.g. of wing structures useful for flying) seems to require some usefulness of evolving structures in intermediary, pre-full-eventual-usefullness, stages.
    5. Therefore Archaeopteryx most likely was, as I see it, a ground/rough-ground and thicket dweller, using wing fingers for clambering, and wings for balancing when jumping up/down or scrambling.
    6. Question to test hypothesis:   Is there evidence of hillside/mountainside habitats associated with fossil remains? (&: Does there need to be or is it likely? fossils of A. lith. are rare and might be formed from the remains of abberant/stray individuals, out of their native element - ?

      [(c) R. Hess, June 6, 2002.]

  2. A probable dietary balance principle followed by Anser canadensis.
    1. A. can., when fed abundant corn (Zea mays) during maximum growth period of young goslings, always insist on consuming grass immediately after a corn feed, even if previous overgrazing has left nothing of the available grass but brown dry stuff.
    2. A. can. juveniles eat grass by grasping a stalk or leaf transversely near its base, pulling upward to snap & shear the blade or stem, then 'suck up' the stalk or leaf from the bottom of the removed portion upward, ending with the top.
    3. A. can. is observed to eat in post-harvest wheat stubble. (Ref. any encyclopedia)
    4. Since goslings when eating always take the top growth, and show desire to balanced dietary when fed nothing but seeds (even if they have to eat brown stuff), therefore their "normal dietary" is both grass stems (& leaves) and the seeds at the top of the plant - a leafage-to-seed ratio that they attempt to maintain.

      [(c) R. Hess, June 6, 2002.]

- Page constructed June 6-8-11-12-13, 2002, by Russell Hess, Webmaster (hess1@bigfoot.com) of 'UpSky2' & 'UpSky'.

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