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Dinosaurs – Herbivores

Describe how dinosaurs evolved various physical structures in order to process plants as a source of food.

Assignment Value = 10 marks. Answer lengths specified are for 12 point fonts, single spacing and 1″ page margins.

Use the information in Modules 9 and 12, the textbook, and your own research to answer the following questions:

1) One of the more specialized of all herbivorous dinosaurs was the African sauropod Nigersaurus. It features one of the most highly specialized of all dental structures found in a dinosaur.
a) Describe the characteristics of the unusual skull of Nigersaurus. (1/2 page – an illustration is strongly suggested) 2 Marks
b) How would this unique arrangement of teeth help it feed? (1/4 page) 1 Mark
c) Why would the bones of its skull need to be so thin? (1/4 page) 1 Mark

2) One of the last of the Ornithopods to evolve was Edmontosaurus. It was a very large animal and as such it needed to process a great deal of food every day.
a) Describe the dental battery of Edmontosaurus. Approximately how many teeth were found in its mouth? (1/2 page – an illustration is strongly suggested) 2 Marks
b) Based on the design of its dental battery, what types of plants would Edmontosaurus be processing? Do we have fossil evidence to support this? (1/4 page) 1 Mark

textbook is princeton university guide to dinosaurs

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