Researchers discovered that predatory theropod dinosaurs employed the puncture-and-pull feeding methodology to catch and dismember their prey. Here, the Saurornitholestes is proven using the strategy. ( Sydney Mohr and Javier Ruiz | Current Biology )
Analysis of the enamel of three main varieties of carnivorous dinosaurs reveal comparable put on patterns whatever the dimension of the dinosaur and of the tooth itself. As it seems, the dinosaurs employed the identical feeding strategies however various in prey choice primarily based on their enamel energy and form.
Upon evaluation of the enamel of predatory theropods from the Upper Cretaceous, researchers discovered that the creatures employed a feeding methodology known as the puncture and pull, whereby they used their serrated enamel to puncture the pores and skin of their prey after which pull their heads again whereas nonetheless biting down.
This was gathered primarily based on the patterns of small scratches on the enamel, particularly the parallel scratches that seem when the dinosaurs chunk down and the indirect scratches that type when the pinnacle is pulled again. These scratches have been noticed in all of the tooth samples analyzed, apart from one pattern that has barely eroded.
“We found the microwear patterns were similar in all of the teeth we examined, regardless of the size of the dinosaur, the size of the tooth or the shape of the denticles,” said Ryan Wilkinson of the University of Alberta Department of Biological Sciences, coauthor of the examine.
Different Prey Choice
Although the theropods have been discovered to have employed an analogous looking methodology, researchers additionally discovered that they almost definitely had completely different prey selections primarily due to sure variations of their enamel. Because their enamel nonetheless various in form and energy, making some stronger and others extra susceptible to breakage, the dinosaurs have been virtually pressured to favor sure varieties of prey over others.
For occasion, whereas the Dromaeosaurus and Saurornitholestes have been doubtless tailored to deal with struggling prey and processing bone, Troodontids doubtless most well-liked softer, smaller, and probably even motionless prey, as their enamel have been likelier to fail at non-optimal chunk positions and angles.
(Photo : Torices, Wilkinson, et. al | Current Biology) Theropod dinosaur enamel are sometimes sharp and serrated however may additionally fluctuate relying on the creatures’ species and clades. Evidently, Dromaeosaurus and Saurornitholestes enamel have been extra susceptible to put on down over time.
“All these dinosaurs were living at the same time and place, so it is important to know if they were competing for food resources or if they were aiming for different prey,” said the examine’s first creator, Angelica Torices of Universidad de La Rioja, Spain.
The study is printed within the journal Current Biology.
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