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

Re: Tyrannosaurus rex: hunters rule, scavengers go hungry (free pdf)

Nice how they can claim a mass for taxa based solely on shed teeth...

Lee Hall
Paleontology Undergraduate
Museum of the Rockies
Montana State University
Bozeman, MT

On Wed, Jan 26, 2011 at 1:49 AM,  <bh480@scn.org> wrote:
> From: Ben Creisler
> bh480@scn.org
> This item was in various news stories late yesterday.
> Here's the citation and link to the free pdf in case they
> have not been posted yet:
> Chris Carbone, Samuel T. Turvey and Jon Bielby (2011)
> Intra-guild competition and its implications for one of
> the biggest terrestrial predators, Tyrannosaurus rex.
> Proceedings of the Royal Society B (online publication)
> doi: 10.1098/rspb.2010.2497
> http://rspb.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/early/2011/
> 01/20/rspb.2010.2497.full.pdf+html
> Identifying tradeoffs between hunting and scavenging in
> an ecological context is important for understanding
> predatory guilds. In the past century, the feeding
> strategy of one of the largest and best-known terrestrial
> carnivores, Tyrannosaurus rex, has been the subject of
> much debate: was it an active predator or an obligate
> scavenger? Here we look at the feasibility of an adult T.
> rex being an obligate scavenger in the environmental
> conditions of Late Cretaceous North America, given the
> size distributions of sympatric herbivorous dinosaurs and
> likely competition with more abundant small-bodied
> theropods. We predict that nearly 50 per cent of
> herbivores would have been within a 55–85 kg range, and
> calculate based on expected encounter rates that
> carcasses from these individuals would have been quickly
> consumed by smaller theropods. Larger carcasses would
> have been very rare and heavily competed for, making them
> an unreliable food source. The potential carcass search
> rates of smaller theropods are predicted to be 14–60
> times that of an adult T. rex. Our results suggest that
> T. rex and other extremely large carnivorous dinosaurs
> would have been unable to compete as obligate scavengers
> and would have primarily hunted large vertebrate prey,
> similar to many large mammalian carnivores in modern-day
> ecosystems.
> Links to news stories and blogs with reactions and
> comments:
> http://www.redorbit.com/news/science/1985428/study_dispute
> s_claims_that_t_rex_was_a_scavenger/
> http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2011/01/tyrannosaurus-
> rex-scavenger/
> http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/41274041/ns/technology_and_sci
> ence-science/