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Re: T. Rex the hunter (the DMNH Edmontosaurus revisited)

> With the bite power (thousands of lbs/square inch) and massive teeth of
> T. rex, I doubt
> it was a carcass-picker. It probably was a carcass-amputator.

      The _Triceratops_ specimen in Erickson & Olson's 1995 paper in JVP
[16(1), I think] seems to explicitly demonstrate that T.rex was capable of
"amputating".  Bone chewing behavior, particularly as impressive as was
done on the _Triceratops_, is pretty rare for theropods.   

> undamaged the rest of the vertebral column was.  The damage occured
> only on caudal vertebra #15, and only the top half of the neural spine
> was missing. 

     Not quite; the spines immediately on either side are also damaged.
If you look at the actual specimen, you can see they are clealy warped and
broken; and I believe also exhibit bone regrowth.  The damage is concentrated 
in one area, but is not resticted to one spine.      
> It also appears that some ossified tendons below
> caudal#15 were also damaged.  

     The ossified tendons are phony.

> of the premaxillary region of T. rex, was: how could a T. rex nip off
> the top of the neural spine of only one vertebra, while leaving the
> adjacent neural spines undamaged?  The premaxillary teeth ("nipping
> teeth")

     If you consider the really broken off neural spine as the middle of
the bite, and look at the damage to the spines on either side, the size
and shape of the damaged area is about right for a _T.rex_ snout. 

LN Jeff