Plant-eating dinosaurs coexisted by munching different vegetation
Some huge sauropods ate ferns while others ate trees, researchers conclude from examining skulls
"Two kinds of large herbivorous dinosaurs that lived side by side had skulls that allowed the creatures to specialize in feeding on different plants, researchers report October 8 in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B.
Diplodocus and Camarasaurus were members of the iconic group of enormous, long-necked dinosaurs known as sauropods. Around 150 million years ago during the Late Jurassic, at least 10 sauropod genera roamed North America in a semiarid environment that offered sparse vegetation.
Researchers took CT scans and created simulations of both dinosaurs’ skulls. By looking at marks on the bones where muscles would have attached, the researchers also reconstructed musculature.
Camarasaurus, with a short, heavy jaw, had stronger muscles and the more powerful bite of the two dinosaurs. Diplodocus, with a long, thin jaw, had a weaker bite.
Camarasaurus probably used its powerful bite to crunch through woody conifers. Diplodocus probably grazed on ferns and horsetails, grasping plants and tugging with its strong neck to strip them bare, the researchers conclude."
I bet the dung piles were hubs of fertility and activity in that arid environment
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