DISCOVERED BY-CHARLES MORTRAM STERNBERG
DISCOVERED IN-ALBERTA, CANADA
A relative of Tyrannosaurus Rex, Daspletosaurus was a fairly large species of theropod dinosaur measuring roughly 30 feet long and weighing anywhere between 2 and 4 tons. Like Tyrannosaurus, Daspletosaurus had a large, somewhat laterally compressed skull (3.3 feet), pewny forearms with two, clawed fingers, and walked on two powerful hind limbs that had 4 toes, though hallux does not touch the ground. It had a long tail to counterbalance it's weight, and it is believed to have been carnivorous. It had around 6 dozen teeth that unlike many other theropods, were oval in cross section instead of blade-like, except for the teeth at the end of it'supper jaw (premaxilla) which were "D" shaped in cross section. This heterodonty (having teeth of different morphologies) is in fact something seen in a number of dinosaur species and may give clues about diet.
Daspletosaurus remains were first discovered by Charles Mortram Sternberg in 1921 Steveville, Alberta, Canada and was not fully described until 1970 by Dale Russell. And gave it the name Daspletosaurus which means "Frightful Lizard". The originalspecimen was amde up of a partial skeleton including a skull, a shoulder, a forelimb, pelvis, a femur, all neck vertebrae, all torso and hip vertebrae, and 11 tail vertebrae.
As with other species of dinosaur, much info is lacking that can tell us about crucial aspects of Daspletosaurus' lifestyle. Yet fossils can only tell us so much. In order to fully understand an animal one must observe living specimens. To a person believing in evolution, tens of millions of years is a long time for a species to remain unchanged and alive. Yet for someone believing in the biblical model of creation,folowed by the The Great Deluge, dinosaurs have always lived alongside humans and could still be living today in remoteplaces just a few thousand years after the flood.
DISCOVERED BY-H. F. OSBORN
HABITAT-UNKNOWN, LIKELY FORESTS AND OPEN AREAS
DIET-MEAT, BOTH PREY AND CARRION.
DISCOVERED IN-MONTANA, USA.
Tyrannosaurus Rex is undoubtedly the most famous Dinosaur ever and is believed by evolutinary proponents to have been a prime carnivore of the Cretaceous 68-65 million years ago . It has been involved in almost every piece of Dinosaur related media ever produced from TV to movies to books and toys, if there are Dinosaurs then there is a Tyrannosaurus Rex, or T-Rex for short.
First discovered in 1902, T-Rex has been around for over a century. It has undergone several changes throughout its Paleohistory, first it's name, then it's posture, suggestions of sexual dimorphism, and of course physical appearance. Originally positioned in the classic tripod stance with the body held at a 45 degree angle and the tail dragging, similar to a kangaroo, it was later found in 1992 that this posture would have been physically impossible for a living animal as it would have destroyed its hip joints. It has since been repositioned horizontally with the tail sticking out to counterbalance the head.
At a recorded maximum of 42 feet in a fossil skeleton named "Sue", Tyrannosaurus Rex is one of the largest land carnivores to ever live. Tyrannosaurus Rex ranged around 13.1 feet tall at the hips so it was quite high off the ground as well, meaning that it could have easily towered above many of its smaller prey items. It is unclear as to the actual weight of a T-Rex, but many now say between 6-7.5 tons. The neck of Tyrannosaurus formed a natural S shape, like many Theropods, but it was also short to support its massive head which could be up to 5 feet long itself.
The skull of T-Rex is where most of the action occurred since it was it's sole means of killing prey or injuring opponents. Tyrannosaurus is believed to have had the strongest bite force of any animal that has ever lived, a belief not held by all, but indeed many. The skull of Tyrannosaurus shows that there were many muscle attachment points. As well as a large head, the teeth of T-Rex were very large, the current record is a full 12 inches, 1 foot long, and many of the forward teeth were partially serrated like knives, while the incisors were more rounded and non-serrated, being used to crush bone.
Although long considered a supreme apex predator, many now believe that Tyrannosaurus was in fact a scavenger. A theory that has upset many T-Rex fans. This theory has come about from several facts. Firstly that Tyrannosaurus had obviously small front limbs, only one meter (3.3 feet) in length. Such small limbs in proportion to its body size would have been useless in predation and holding a struggling animal. Some have conjectured that the reduced sized limbs were used in courtship similar to that of Python and Boa cloacal spurs.
Tyrannosaurus also had exceptional olfactory cavities, the most highly developed out of the 21 Dinosaur species that have been tested so far. This has been compared to vultures that use highly developed sense of smell to seek out carrion over large distances.
Tyrannosaurus could also crush bone and therefore extract the most nutrition out of a kill possible by also digesting bone marrow from crushed bones. This has been compared to hyenas, though T-Rex could not "chew" the bones like hyenas since they did not have molars, it is likely that by breaking the bones open allowed the marrow to be exposed enough for the digestive enzymes to break down the marrow for digestion.
There is also evidence that T-Rex was not a fast moving runner but in fact a steady walker, taking it's time in moving from one area to another, however this cannot be confirmed from fossils.
One finding that has the most physical implication is the analysis of Tyrannosaurus teeth. It has been found that the roots of Tyrannosaurus teeth are far more shallow than they should be for a pure predator that would hunt, bite, and hang on to struggling prey, but perfectly acceptable for a scavenger that ate things that never fought back or moved at all.
A constant debate of Tyrannosaurus' status as hunter or scavenger has been raging for some time and may not be settled for years. And while many believe it may have been a scavenger, it is most likely that it was a combination hunter and scavenger, hunting when it needed to but many times stealing kills or feeding on carrion, similar to Hyenas. The obvious question to some though is that if Tyrannosaurus was not the top predator of it's ecosystem, then what was? Some have suggested packs of smaller Theropods such as Deinonychus, however this only works in Old Earth models where not all organisms lived at the same time, and it is unlikely that packs of small predators could take down the giant herbivores such as Sauropods. In the eyes of Creationists it is likely that humans have always been the top predator on the planet.
Despite the way Tyrannosaurus acquired its meals, Tyrannosaurus was indeed a fearsome animal, however, the factor that has dethroned Tyrannosaurus more than anything else is perhaps the size issue. Once the biggest land carnivore known, it has since been bumped down in size ranking. Several times. In fact, Tyrannosaurus is currently ranked fourth in the top five largest Theropod Dinosaurs. The first place crown currently belongs to Spinosaurus.
It is worth noting that throughout history there have been many mentions of creatures (such as dragons) that have been described much like Tyrannosaurus and other Theropod Dinosaurs. It is even thought by some that Tyrannosaurus Rex is the identity of the legendary Grendel in the historical story of Beowulf. This is discussed in the section Dragons: The kings of legend.