Originally posted by ShadowXIX
-Jack Horner suggests that useless little front limbs are a strong indication that T rex scavenged.
I recall a functional study was done not too long ago, the general conlusion of which seemed to be that the arms were good at absorbing shock and (and
I might be stretching this abit) 'hodling' things. Not the hand itself, but the entire limb. I image this to mean its used as something like meat
hooks, things that latch on when extremely close and prevent the prey from getting away. Obviously not something a scavanger would need, but also,
not necessarily supporting an extremely active predator. It might in fact better support the idea of an ambush predator, something that bursts out of
nowhere, locks hold of the prey, and dispatches it then.
Crocodiles are the closest animal we know which can show the raw reptilian bite force that T rex must have been able to exert.
Keep in mind that there were other dinosaurs that cna be studied also, in terms of jaw mechanics. Also, there are other living animals that have
powerful jaws that can be studied, not only crocodiles.
-Horner says that predatory animals must fight and jump and therefore might fall. If T rex fell it might break its jaw and ribs and could not recover,
particularly without strong arms to cusion itsself.
Take other animals for instance - A fall can be fatal to a giraffe and yet they frequently run.
Four legged animals are much much more stable than two legged ones, especiall dinosaurs. Humans have a spine as a central supporting column,
dinosaurs, however, have to be balanced at their hip.
Monkeys die falling from trees but it doesnt mean they stop climbing.
they don't weight several tons either.
-By looking at the proportions of T rex legs Jack Horner shows that T rex was not a runner. It has a short fibia compared the femur. T rex
couldnt eat what it couldnt catch.
This observation must be placed in context. The prey of T rex would have been other large animals. T rex only needed to be as fast as the animals upon
which it fed, such as Edmontosaurus or Triceratops. Caculations have shown that, even without running, a 12m long T rex would easily reach 25 miles
per hour. At good stride T rex could certainly match a Hadrosaur and possibly Triceratops.
The problem is that the T.Rex has a short fibia compared to the femur relative to other predatory dinosaurs, like allosaurus or ceratosaurus and the
like. So this ratio is used to support the idea that it was slower compared to other dinosaurs, and why would they be so much faster if they didn't
need to be?
The brain of T rex was also very similar to another modern-day animal: The Alligator. Birds (including vultures) have an enlarged area of the
brain devoted to processing data however alligators, like large theropod dinosaurs, have a smaller part of the brain developed to processing and a
large portion devoted to just receiving sensory input. This doesnt tells us if the food was been sought out living or dead, but rather how the hunter
reacts when it reaches it.
The cat scan data shows that the t rex had an abnormally and particularly enlarged portion of the brain concerned with processing scent, on the order
of the ratio that a vulture, a pure scavenger that 'hunts' thru scent, has. Aligators do not have the same proportions of the different parts of
Out of all the large meat eating Theropod Dinosaurs T-rex brain was by far the biggest. Other Dinosaurs some that might have been even bigger
then the T-Rex like the Giganatosaurs had a the part of the brain that produces intellgence that was 50% smaller then the T-Rex
Horner wasn't talking about the part of the brain concerning 'intelligence', he was talking about the part involved in sense of smell. The large
olfactory bulbs indicate that trex had an unusually powerful sense of smell.
Where did you get that information concerning relative brain sizes by the way?
Well if you couldnt tell im a supporter of T-rex as a Hunter
You probably can't tell from what i've been saying but I think he was a hunter too. I think that the olfactory information requires an explanation,
and the unusual leg ratios indicate that something was going on with t rex that wasn't happeneing in other large predatory dinosaurs.
Some people in this thread, i have noticed, are missing that horner is adovacting that t rex was exclusively
a scavenger. Just on the surface
tho, there are very very few animals that do this. Vultures do it, but, a vulture has the advantage of being able to glide in the air under minimal
muscle power and cover extraordinary distances from that vantage point. A t rex would have to walk to the carrion, which is a vastly different way of
expending energy, and requires a good deal of time, time for other animals to get to the kill.
I did rather like the cgi animation of a t rex stomping up to a kill in the recent show about this. Even if dozens of other animals beat the t rex to
the kill, they certainly aren't going to stand in its way.
Lions, from what I understand, often do this.
[edit on 13-8-2004 by Nygdan]