Growth and Development

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According to Paul (1997), dinosaurs would have grown extremely rapidly. The larger the adults, the greater the number of eggs that they would have laid -probably many tens of thousands during the life spans of the largest sauro-pods. The extreme ratio between size on hatching and at adulthood would have necessitated very rapid growth for sexual maturity to have been reached within two or three decades. Breeding would have had to begin within that time scale if sufficient juveniles were to survive to sexual maturation. Dinosaurs could not have lived and grown for more than 100-150 years at most. Smaller dinosaurs may have been K-strategists, with low birth rates and advanced parental care, although with fast growth rates. Large species, on the other hand, were undoubtedly fast-breeding r-strategists, with high levels of egg deposition, fast growth and high juvenile mortality. Only small numbers of juveniles needed to reach sexual maturity to build up and maintain large populations. These would have been skewed more towards juveniles than were those of the K-strategists with lower birth rates and the advantage of parental care.

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Pregnancy And Childbirth

Pregnancy And Childbirth

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