A recently published study co-authored by Oklahoma State Professor Haley O’Brien and UW-La Crosse Professor Eric Snively sheds new light on arguably the most well-known dinosaur ever.
“Our study re-enforces that T. Rex was the most awesome creature that ever existed on this planet. And what it told us more is how it was able to hunt,” said Snively.
Over the course of the last three years, around ten undergrad students, one grad students and several researchers across the globe tested the methods to determine how fast certain dinosaurs could turn their bodies.
The findings produced results saying T. Rex’s could move their bodies twice as fast as other dinosaurs of similar size.
“Tyrannosaurs, like T. rex, would turn their bodies pretty quickly,” says Snively. “Probably to go after dangerous, or smaller, prey whereas other big carnivorous dinosaurs couldn’t turn as quickly, couldn’t run as quickly either. And would probably go after bigger, lumbering prey.”
Snively says this latest study helps scientists get closer to understanding dinosaurs as living animals.
And since it is impossible to fully understand a T. Rex, studies like this bring researchers as close to the animals as they can.
“Luckily we have fossils, we have good skeletons and so we take side and top views of the skeletons and we flesh them out. We put muscle and soft tissues and everything else on them so we have a really accurate model of the animal and then we figure out how big it was by using those views and making computer models out of it,” said Snively.
He says the next stage of the research is to study plant eating dinosaurs to see how they turned and moved, to potentially avoid a T. Rex.