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Theropod feeding behavior from tooth-marks on sauropod bone



From: Ben Creisler
bh480@scn.org

New online paper:

In Sung Paik, Hyun Joo Kim, Jong Deock Lim, Min Huh, & Ho Il Lee (2011)
Diverse tooth marks on an adult sauropod bone from the Early Cretaceous,
Korea: implications in feeding behaviour of theropod dinosaurs.
Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology (advance online
publication)
doi:10.1016/j.palaeo.2011.07.002 
http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0031018211003580

Abstract
Although carnivorous dinosaurs probably engaged in both predation and
scavenging, it has been suggested that the tyrannosaurids were uniquely
scavengers. The fossil record of bone damage resulting from predation by
carnivorous theropod dinosaurs is sparse, and it is often difficult to
determine whether tooth-marks were produced through predation or
scavenging. In this study unusual tooth-marks on a caudal vertebra of an
adult sauropod from the Lower Cretaceous Hasandong Formation, Korea, which
are the deepest and longest scores ever documented, are described. In
addition to these tooth-marks, small tooth-strike lesions, including
shallow gouges and divots, are present on the same bone. These tooth-marks
provide insight into the feeding behaviour of dinosaurs that scavenged the
bodies of large, adult dinosaurs. The presence of both large and small
tooth-marks on a single bone suggests that theropods of different sizes or
kinds exploited the same adult sauropod carcass to deflesh it and/or to
obtain bone nutrients, in a manner identical to that of modern carnivores.


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