How to eat a Triceratops

29 Oct, 2012 · Sascha · Wissenschaft

Image by Nate Carroll

Paläontologen am Museum of the Rockies in Bozeman, Montana haben herausgefunden, wie man als Tyrannosaurus Rex einen Triceratops am besten frisst, sodass man an das leckere und reichhaltige Nackenmuskelfleisch herankommt. The more you know!

As Fowler and his colleagues examined the various types of bite mark on the skulls, they were intrigued by the extensive puncture and pull marks on the neck frills on some of the specimens. At first, this seemed to make no sense. “The frill would have been mostly bone and keratin,” says Fowler. “Not much to eat there.” The pulling action and the presence of deep parallel grooves led the team to realise that these marks were probably not indicative of actual eating, but repositioning of the prey. The scientists suggest that the frills were in the way of Tyrannosaurus as it was trying to get at the nutrient-rich neck muscles.

“It’s gruesome, but the easiest way to do this was to pull the head off,” explains Fowler with a grin. The researchers found further evidence to support this idea when they examined the Triceratops occipital condyles — the ball-socket head–neck joint — and found tooth marks there too. Such marks could only have been made if the animal had been decapitated.

How to eat a Triceratops: Tyrannosaurus tore the head off armoured prey to reach the tender neck meat.