STL Science Center

STL Science Center

18 April 2015

Not Allosaurus

Piatnitzkysaurus has been compared to Allosaurus at least once that has been noted. There are some similarities between the two dinosaurs, however they are not identical or close to identical by any means. Both dinosaurs were agile in appearance and actual morphology. This means that both dinosaurs had the ability to run down their prey. Additionally, the forelimbs were longer than many later theropods and strong enough to adequately grapple with larger prey items. These could have included, for Piatnitzkysaurus, iguanodontids and sauropods. The teeth of Piatnitzkysaurus are average for a theropod of this size; they are robust and would have made good puncturing devices, but grappling prey and running it down was probably the main hunting tactic for this medium sized carnivore. Considering its size it may have, as Allosaurus is thought to have, hunted the largest sauropod prey in small impromptu packs organized during migration seasons. This, of course, is just an unsubstantiated hypothesis however.

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