A major finding by scientists in Florida could totally change how we think of the king of the dinosaurs.
Scientists at Florida State University have just made a major discovery about the Tyrannosaurus rex, a finding that could greatly enhance our understanding of this massive bloodthirsty beast that lived 67 million years ago, right up until the moment dinosaurs were wiped off the face of the Earth. They found that the T. rex had a totally unique jaw that allowed it to crunch through the bones of its prey.
Basically, its jaw is like a hybrid between a crocodile and a canine. The T. rex was actually quite different from other meat eating dinosaurs in that respect, scientists think, and that had to do with its unique body structure, with its famously small arms compared to its massive jaws and teeth.
But this setup enabled the T. rex to chew bones with the force of a hyena, except many times that. It also had the massive bite force of a crocodile, making its jaw the ultimate bone crunching machine, exerting up to 431,000 pounds per square inch.
“It was this bone-crunching acumen that helped T. rex to more fully exploit the carcasses of large horned-dinosaurs and duck-billed hadrosaurids whose bones, rich in mineral salts and marrow, were unavailable to smaller, less equipped carnivorous dinosaurs,” Paul Gignac, assistant professor of Anatomy and Vertebrate Paleontology at Oklahoma State University Center for Health Sciences, who also worked on the study, said in the FSU statement.
“Having high bite force doesn’t necessarily mean an animal can puncture hide or pulverize bone, tooth pressure is the biomechanically more relevant parameter,” Florida State University Professor of Biological Science Gregory Erickson said. “It is like assuming a 600 horsepower engine guarantees speed. In a Ferrari, sure, but not for a dump truck.”