[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index][Subject Index][Author Index]

RE: Theropod Teeth/Lizard lips

>        Overhanging teeth make biting , and cutting into flesh next to
>impossible, and this fights the theory of theropods using their jaws like
>cookie cutters, which I believe they DID.  How can tooth work against
>when they are separated by a gap of flesh?
>This last statement makes me slightly nervous. You do know that the
>structure of the jaw meant that dinosaurs had no side to side movement
>for grinding like modern toothed mammals, merely an up and down motion
>(as in birds who no longer have any teeth), therefore tooth-gnashing
>wouldn't be working quite like modern carnivores' do.

To some extent modern carnivore teeth and those of predatory dinosaur are
similar and do work against each other. Both have an over bite dentition
and a fixed-hinge jaw so that, as the jaws come together, a slicing point
is generated by the occlusion of the two sets of teeth. The slicing point
first appears at the back of the mouth and moves forwars as the jaws close
further. This is the scissor action useful for cutting flesh. So, in this
sence, there are similarities between the teeth of modern carnivores and
predatory dinosaurs and the teeth do indeed work against each other.

Cheers, Paul

Dr Paul M.A. Willis
Consulting Vertebrate Palaeontologist
Quinkana Pty Ltd