“Vegetarian” dinosaurs differed in the way they eat Mexico

Scientists from the Natural History Museum and the Universities of Bristol and Birminghamin the UK, concluded that vegetarian dinosaurs differed in their diet.

To round out the find, the researchers used CT scans of dinosaur skulls to trace the evolution of the first “vegetarian” dinosaurs. Jaw muscles were reconstructed and bite force was measured to understand how their eating evolved.

Los specimens of the Ornithischia group: Heterodontasaurus, Lesothosaurus, Scelidosaurus, Hypsilophodon and Psittacosaurus They gave the key to unlock eating habits. It should be noted that these were the first representatives of the main groups of herbivorous dinosaurs.

“We found that each dinosaur addressed the problems posed by a plant-based diet by adopting very different feeding techniques. Some compensated for low food performance through their large size. Others developed larger jaw muscles, greater efficiency of the jaw system, or these combined approaches. Although they looked very similar, their individual solutions to the same problems illustrate the unpredictable nature of evolution.” Said Dr. Stephan Lautenschlager, of the University of Birmingham.

One of the cases that exemplifies the above is that of the Heterodontosaurus. This dinosaur appears to have had large jaw muscles relative to the size of its skull.which produces great bite force, ideal for consuming resistant vegetation.

After CT scanning of the skulls, the team reconstructed the jaw muscles using data from birds and crocodiles. This to find out how the eating styles of “vegetarian” dinosaurs evolved.

Each skull was simulated to bite an imaginary object and see how they respond to the applied force. In addition, the models generated heat maps showing which areas of the skull are stressed and which are not. The results revealed that each of these herbivorous dinosaurs had different ways of eating plants.

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