December 15, 2020 8:50:12 pm
Scientists have digitally reconstructed a dinosaur’s brain, giving them a rare glimpse into its behavior and diet.
According to a CNN report citing a study published by the Linnean Society’s Zoological Journal, researchers at Bristol University have reconstructed the brain of a Thecodontosaurus, a sauropod believed to have been discovered in England 205 million years ago . The results indicated that the Thecodontosaurus’ diet might be meat based and that they walked with two legs.
“Our analysis of the Thecodontosaurus brain revealed many fascinating features, some of which were quite surprising. While its later relatives moved heavily on all fours, our results suggest that this species may have walked on two legs and was occasionally carnivorous, ”Antonio Ballell, the lead author, was quoted as saying. The study also found that the Thecodontosaurus was shaped like a large dog.
The report goes on to say that although the dinosaur fossils were discovered in the 19th century, it has only recently been possible to study them without being destroyed. “Although the actual brain has long been gone, the software allows us to recreate the shape of the brain and inner ear using the dimensions of the cavities left behind,” added Ballell. “The Thecodontosaurus cerebral shell is beautifully preserved, so we compared it to other dinosaurs and identified common features and some features specific to Thecodontosaurus,” Ballell continued.
The creature’s brain shell has revealed large flake lobes, researchers have found. They help with balancing and further indicate that they were moving on two legs. “This structure is also linked to control of balance and eye and neck movements, suggesting that Thecodontosaurus was relatively agile and was able to maintain a steady gaze while moving quickly,” Ballell was quoted as saying. New technologies helped create 3D models of the Braincase and Endocast.
“Our analysis showed that parts of the brain associated with stabilizing the head, eyes and gaze are calm during movement, are well developed. It could also mean that Thecodontosaurus might catch prey on occasion, though its tooth morphology suggests that plants were the main part of its diet. It is possible that it has adopted omnivorous habits, ”he was further quoted as saying.
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