T. rex was a coward and liked eating baby dinosaurs

It seems The King of the Terror-Lizards, was nothing but a bully, preferring not to pick on prey their own size. Writes The Independent:

A study into the predatory habits and diet of the biggest and most ferocious of the dinosaurs has concluded that T.rex and the other members of its carnivorous theropod family preferred to dine on juvenile prey, preferably small enough to eat whole.

[…]

“Modern predators mainly attack vulnerable, young animals as they are inexperienced in evading predators, and this was probably the same in dinosaurs,” said Dr Hone, who works at the Institute of Vertebrate Palaeontology and Palaeoanthropology in Beijing.

“Young prey are easier to bring down and the risk of injury to the predator is much lower,” he said.

Rampant baby-eating could explain why there are so few young dinosaurs, compared to adults, in the fossil record. And if you look in the stomachs of carnivorous theropods, the preserved bones of prey, rare as that is, are juveniles. That they were eaten whole could explains why the bones show so few bite marks.

Of course, T. rex is an iconic dinosaur, with a vast propaganda machine, and I think this news will hardly put a dent in the King’s reputation.

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