Dinosaur with Vacuum Cleaner-Like Jaw

Paleontologist Paul Sereno of the University of Chicago and colleagues discovered a dinosaur with a very strange jaw that looks like a vacuum-cleaner:

While Nigersaurus' mouth is shaped like the wide intake slot of a vacuum, it has something lacking in most cleaners — hundreds of tiny, sharp teeth to grind up its food.

The 30-foot-long Nigersaurus had a feather-light skull held close to the ground to graze like an ancient cow. Sereno described it as a younger cousin of the North American dinosaur Diplodicus.

Its broad muzzle contained more than 50 columns of teeth lined up tightly along the front edge of it's jaw. Behind each tooth more were lined up as replacements when one broke off.

Link (Photo: Mike Hettwer, Project Exploration)


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