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1 April 2015 Was the Eubrontes Track Maker Gregarious? Testing the Herding Hypothesis at Powder Hill Dinosaur Park, Middlefield, Connecticut
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Abstract

The theropod footprint taxon Eubrontes is common in Early Jurassic rocks of the Hartford Basin. Aligned Eubrontes trackways at one site in Holyoke, Massachusetts, have led to the hypothesis that the track makers were gregarious; however, trackways are not aligned at several other sites. To test the gregariousness hypothesis, we measured trackway orientations at Powder Hill Dinosaur Park in Middlefield, Connecticut, where exposed rocks were deposited in an ephemeral lake environment, and compared these orientations to those of two additional track sites from similar sedimentary facies. The Eubrontes trackways produced in the ephemeral lake environments have no preferred orientation and provide no evidence of gregarious behavior. We suggest that the alignment of tracks in Holyoke reflects behavior in response to environmental settings rather than group behavior. Trackways may be aligned next to large, permanent lakes because of shoreline-parallel travel, but random orientations characterize other habitats. This study underscores the value of examining track sites from different paleoenvironments when inferring dinosaur behavior.

©2015 Peabody Museum of Natural History, Yale University. All rights reserved.
Patrick R. Getty, Laurel Hardy, and Andrew M. Bush "Was the Eubrontes Track Maker Gregarious? Testing the Herding Hypothesis at Powder Hill Dinosaur Park, Middlefield, Connecticut," Bulletin of the Peabody Museum of Natural History 56(1), (1 April 2015). https://doi.org/10.3374/014.056.0109
Received: 13 November 2014; Accepted: 1 January 2015; Published: 1 April 2015
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