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Unusual fish-eating dinosaur had crocodile-like skull
Date:1/13/2008

y it might be a fish-eater and Emilys analysis, which was done at the Natural History Museum, has demonstrated that to be the case.

The CT-data revealed that although Baryonyx and the gharial have independently evolved to feed in a similar manner, through quirks of their evolutionary history their skulls are shaped in a slightly different way in order to achieve the same function. This shows us that in some cases there is more than one evolutionary solution to the same problem.

The unusual skull of Baryonyx is very elongate, with a curved or sinuous jaw margin as seen in large crocodiles and alligators. It also had stout conical teeth, rather than the blade-like serrated ones in meat-eating dinosaurs, and a striking bulbous jaw tip (or nose) that bore a rosette of teeth, more commonly seen today in slender-jawed fish eating crocodilians such as the Indian fish-eating gharial.

The dinosaur in question, Baryonyx walkeri, was discovered near Dorking in Surrey, UK in 1983 by an amateur collector, William Walker, and named after him in 1986 by Alan Charig and Angela Milner. It is an early Cretaceous dinosaur, around 125 million years old, and belongs to a family called spinosaurs.


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Contact: Cherry Lewis
cherry.lewis@bristol.ac.uk
44-117-928-8086
University of Bristol
Source:Eurekalert  

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