Dinosaur that broke its wrist may have fallen while mating

[ad_1]

A dinosaur bone unearthed in eastern Russia shows evidence of an injury the plant-eater sustained when it fell awkwardly



Life



2 March 2022

dinosaur

An artist’s reconstruction of Amurosaurus

Andrey Atuchin

A four-legged duck-billed dinosaur that lived 68 million years ago – in what is now eastern Russia – probably broke its wrist after falling from an upright position during mating or while reaching for leaves.

“It was standing on its heels for maybe eating, mating, perhaps just [passing] time, when it fell,” says Filippo Bertozzo at the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences.

Bertozzo and his colleagues used a form of X-ray imaging technology to make the discovery, by analysing a dinosaur lower foreleg bone – the ulna – that was uncovered in Blagoveshchensk in southeast Russia.

Join us for a mind-blowing festival of ideas and experiences. New Scientist Live is going hybrid, with a live in-person event in Manchester, UK, that you can also enjoy from the comfort of your own home, from 12 to 14 March 2022. Find out more.

“This bone is usually very slender, smooth and regular,” says Bertozzo – but in this particular case, the bone had a huge swelling at its wrist end. “I was wondering, what did that to this poor animal?”

By analysing the curvature of the bone and shape of the elbow, the team confirmed that the bone belonged to a herbivorous hadrosaur (Amurosaurus riabinini) which would have lived in herds of dozens to hundreds of individuals. The animal was a sub-adult and around 5 metres long and 2 metres high.

By analysing a digital reconstruction of the bone, and comparing the structure to ulnas belonging to uninjured A. riabinini individuals from the same fossil site, the team revealed that the dinosaur probably fell from an upright position which caused a diagonal fracture at the end of the ulna. This led to overgrowth of the bone during the healing process.

“The fracture is completely surrounded by this structure that is protecting the bone during the healing process,” says Bertozzo.

Based on the extent of healing in the bone, the dinosaur probably limped around for at least four months before its death.

“We can know for sure that the injury didn’t immediately didn’t kill the dinosaur, because clearly, when you die, your body cannot heal,” says Bertozzo.

“It is impressive to think about how resilient these animals were. With a trauma like that, to walk and run would have been quite difficult,” adds Bertozzo.

Bertozzo speculates that the hadrosaur may have been protected by hiding in the middle of herds, but more data is needed to establish whether its herd members helped to care for it.

Journal reference: Historical Biology, DOI: 10.1080/08912963.2022.2034805

More on these topics:

[ad_2]

Source link

Advertisement

spot_img

How to convert a...

Whether you’re more comfortable working in PowerPoint or...

When To Stop Watering...

You can stop watering new grass seed daily...

Senate Preps for Hearings...

Washington —  On Monday, the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee...

What DisplayPort’s new Ultra-High...

The Video Electronics Standards Association (VESA) has announced...

How to convert a Word document to a PowerPoint presentation

Whether you’re more comfortable working in PowerPoint or you’d like to present the content of your Word document in a different way, we’ve...

When To Stop Watering New Grass Seed 2022

You can stop watering new grass seed daily once it has germinated and the grass blades measure to about 1 inch. This should...

Senate Preps for Hearings on Biden’s Ground-Breaking Supreme Court Pick 

Washington —  On Monday, the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee will begin four days of hearings on the nomination of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to...

What DisplayPort’s new Ultra-High Bit Rate (UHBR) certification means to you

The Video Electronics Standards Association (VESA) has announced a new DisplayPort certification called Ultra-High Bit Rate (UHBR) for DisplayPort 2.0. It establishes two...

Discover the best ways to earn passive income in 2022 with this $20 bundle

If you’re trying to get rich working for someone else, then the best of luck to you. From a practical sense, the only...