Large carnivorous dinosaurs, such as Tyrannosaurus rex, evolved smaller eyes to bite more forcefully. Scientists at the University of Birmingham think so.
The researchers compared the eye sockets of 410 different dinosaurs. Over the years, large dinosaurs, such as T. rex, developed increasingly smaller eye sockets. It was due to evolution.
Carnivorous dinosaurs had large, bulging eyes, according to the discovery of ancient skulls. The specimens that lived later had keyhole-shaped eye sockets. The eyes were up to seven times smaller. Herbivores have retained their round eye sockets.
The researchers used computer simulations to see what pressure was under the eyes during the sting. In doing so, they compared the skull of the big-eyed T. rex to that of the small-eyed T. rex.
Bite simulations showed that keyhole-shaped eye sockets deformed less than round eye sockets. The arch-shaped eye sockets of the dinosaur helped to better distribute the bite force to the strongest part of the skull, that is, the part behind the eye socket.
Scientists believe that T. rex replaced its large eyes with smaller ones in order to bite more forcefully. But it may have been at the cost of his eyesight.
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