Was Tyrannosaurus Rex too picky?


Was Tyrannosaurus Rex a foodie?

dinosaur, Persistent in the popular imagination as a ruthless predator that gnaws at any unfortunate creature that crosses its pathIn fact, he had a jaw full of nerve endings that made him a wiser eater than previously known, according to paleontologists in Japan who published their findings in the Journal of Historical Biology on Monday.

Although it may not have been a really special food, the T. university that conducted the study.

In other words, it is very likely that T. Rex did not eat blindly, according to the study. He had keen senses that probably allowed him to recognize different parts of his prey and chew them differently depending on what he was chewing.

Soichiro Kwabe, one of the authors of study And the paleontologist in Institute, in an email. “However, in cases where food is plentiful, they may have used their sensitive nose to selectively eat the nutritious parts of their prey. The tyrannosaurus diet may not be as raw as we imagine.”

The study does not say how the T. Rex distinguished or whether it could tell the difference between bone and flesh.

“These guesses are somewhat fanciful and are not within the scope of what we can scientifically infer from the results of our research,” Dr. Kwabe said.

The significance of the study, he said, is that it reveals the complex development of nerves within the dinosaur’s lower jaw.

“Based on the morphology of the tyrannosaurus mandibular nerve, we were able to show that the jaw tip of the tyrannosaurus was likely a very capable sensor,” said Dr. Kawabe.

Dr. Kwabe and another scientist, Suki Hattori, associate professor at the institute, used computed tomography, or CT, to analyze and reconstruct the structure of the canal in the jawbone through which nerves and blood vessels pass. They studied the fossil of T. Rex found in Hill Creek Formation in Montana.

He said the fossil was well-preserved, allowing researchers to study the structure of the canal.

The delicate jaw tips also provide clues to how the dinosaur interbred.

Crocodiles have a sensitive nose, which helps them detect prey in the water but also gives them such a precise sense of touch that they can hold their young in their mouths without crushing them with their powerful jaws.

“Tyrannosaurus may have done the same thing,” said Dr. Kwabe.

Jack Tsing, a paleontologist at the University of California, Berkeley, who read the report, said the study confirms the “sensitive side of T. Rex.”

“We were really obsessed with the powers that T. Rex could have rather than his versatility,” he said. “It gives us a sense of her ingenuity.”

Dr Tsing said the report gives “another dimension” to a creature that has taken over by the general public but is rarely seen as anything more than a monster. Who analyzed the bite of a teenage tyrannosaurus.

“They weren’t stupid heads who would chomp on anything they saw moving,” he said.

However, Dr. Tsing said the study results underscore the need for more fossil evidence to show how the dinosaur’s sensitive lower jaw was used. He said analysis of the stool, or fossilized stool, “could be another way to understand how sensitive the palate is.”

The report’s authors acknowledge that their findings are limited: they did not analyze the entire mandibular region of the dinosaur or use other dinosaur fossils for comparison.

“Ideally this study could be followed up with a variety of additional dinosaur species, to see if tyrannosaurus was really exceptional, or just a carnivorous dinosaur,” said Thomas R. Holtz, a paleontologist at the university. from Maryland who read the study. “But even this smaller study helps us better understand dinosaurs as living and emotional animals.”

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