It is not unusual to assume that all dinosaurs eat meat. For this reason, most people think that every dinosaur is vicious. Although some dinosaurs have bizarre characteristics like big-sized bodies, not all are ferocious and meat-eating. Moreover, what dinosaurs eat is very complex. You cannot just assume a dinosaur’s diet based on its size and looks.
Moreover, scientists estimate that the majority of dinosaurs that existed were mainly plant-eating. However, a significant number of dinosaurs still feed on meat, with a small portion of dinosaurs feeding on both plants and meat. Understanding the dinosaur diet can help you choose unique merchandise like super fun hidden legs dinosaurs costumes that will make you stand out and appear more brilliant because you appreciate its association with diet.
The different species of dinosaurs were dependent on specific foods that contributed to their survival. Many factors contribute to the adaptations of dinosaurs to food. The shape and size of a dinosaur tooth speak volumes about the kind of food it consumes. Moreover, teeth are among the most common dinosaur fossil finds.
How dinosaur teeth can help determine diet?
It is common for herbivore dinosaurs to have chisel-shaped teeth, an inverted triangle. These teeth had enough surface area for sliding and biting feed.
Long curved and sharp teeth are perfect for tearing up the flesh. This tooth is a common characteristic among flesh-eating dinosaurs. Serrations are another teeth feature typical of carnivorous dinosaurs providing efficient handling of prey.
There are not many differences that set dinosaur teeth apart from those of other animals. However, there are significant differences that scientists study. One of the critical differences involves teeth fitting together. Moreover, dinosaur teeth would re-grow because most species would shed off their old teeth. It is also common for specific dinosaurs to reabsorb old teeth, especially those that wear down after chewing on food extensively. The various teeth features distinguish what type of diet a dinosaur prefers.
What are the three categories of dinosaurs based on their diet?
These plant-eating dinosaurs had teeth that were flat shaped to provide enough surface area for chewing fibrous plants. Moreover, the flat-edged teeth are perfect for selectively stripping leaves off of trees. Although leaves were the primary target, some dinosaurs could supplement their diet with twigs and seeds. Some of the plants dinosaurs could feed on include pine, mosses, and cypresses.
One exciting fact scientists came up with is that herbivorous dinosaurs occasionally fed on stone. This attribute is similar to modern plant-eating birds. The rocks and pebbles did not necessarily have a nutritional benefit but assisted in digesting plant material.
Examples of herbivorous dinosaurs you should know about include Apatosaurus, Dryosaurus, and Iguanodon.
It is not enough for carnivorous dinosaurs to have strong teeth. Every part of their body is adapted to identify, chase and catch prey. The long and strong legs of carnivorous dinosaurs enabled them to run fast to catch prey. Moreover, carnivorous dinosaurs had excellent eyesight with a sharp vision that would spot prey from far away.
It is only fair that these dinosaurs have a profound sense of smell to identify a target and a larger brain to help them develop a hunting strategy. It is a known fact that carnivorous dinosaurs feed on living prey. Therefore, their powerful jaws and vicious claws could help them kill and consume prey easily.
Although most scientists believe carnivorous dinosaurs were apex predators, it is believed that some were scavengers and could feed on prey that died of natural causes. Some examples of carnivorous dinosaurs include Velociraptor, Giganotosaurus, Compsognathus, and Tyrannosaurs.
These species mixed up their diet. Omnivorous dinosaurs fed on both meat and plant material. For this reason, some teeth were adapted to tearing through flesh while some accommodated slicing through plant matter.
Scientists have a theory suggesting that most herbivorous dinosaurs may have started as omnivores: the more these species consumed plants, they would also take insects to satisfy their craving for flesh. Some omnivorous dinosaurs exist Oviraptor, Hagryphus, and Ornithomimus.
Before you base the dinosaur diet on size, do your research to appreciate the features distinguishing dinosaurs’ feeding habits.