A deadly combination of powerful bite, strongteeth and chewing allowed giant predators - T. rex - to literally split the bones of their victims, scientists found. Bones have an internal nutrient cavity filled with bone marrow and phosphate salts. But in order to gain access to these treats, most bone crushers must be able to bring their jaws together to bite through the outer protective layer of the bone. Some carnivorous mammals, such as spotted hyenas and gray wolves, can do this.
But among live reptiles, bone lovers don'tmeet because their upper and lower teeth do not converge, do not close so that they can be clamped. Most modern carnivorous reptiles simply swallow bones to get nutrients.
How much did tyrannosaurs bite?
Tyrannosaurs, including T. rex did not have mammalian teeth, but fossil evidence suggests that dinosaurs somehow crushed prey bones. To find out exactly how, anatomist Paul Ginyak of the University of Oklahoma at Tulsa and paleontologist Gregory Erickson of the University of Florida at Tallahassee examined fossil evidence of the behavior of these creatures at the table. Together, they also studied the power of the bite of the only living dinosaurs - birds, as well as crocodiles, the closest relatives of the dinosaurs. Based on the analysis, it was possible to evaluate the pressure force of the teeth of dinosaurs.
T. rex could split bones, scientists say, thanks to a powerful bite of 34,000 Newtons (more than twice as many as crocodiles, the strongest of all living bites) and a pressure on the tips of the teeth of about 3,000 megapascals. Strong tooth pressure created cracks that weakened the bones. T. rex also repeatedly bit into one place, using its advantages to maximize the benefits of its prey.
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