North America, Hell Creek Formation, Montana, USA, Late Cretaceous, ca. 68 to 65 million years ago. An incredibly-preserved juvenile T. rex tooth, found complete and unbroken, with stunning, intact serrations and enamel. This tooth comes from the side position (lateral) of the jaw. The serrations on both edges are superb. The enamel is incredible and has been preserved in a mix of light and dark, rich walnut brown hues. Size: 0.25" L x .6" W x .4" H (0.6 cm x 1.5 cm x 1 cm)
The most famous dinosaurs of all time are undoubtedly the large, meat-eating members of the Tyrannosauridae family. This family includes species such as Nanotyrannus, Albertosaurus, Gorgosaurus, Daspletosaurus, Tarbosaurus, and the most infamous of all, Tyrannosaurus rex. The emergence of all tyrannosaurids was short-lived and occurred in only a 15 million year span in the Late Cretaceous Period before their extinction ca. 65 millions years ago. The first recognized fossil remains of Tyrannosaurus were discovered in Colorado, U.S.A. in the 1890s; one of the first partial skeletons came from the Hell Creek Formation in 1902.
Scientific arguments about Tyrannosaurus are ongoing today, with differing understandings of the feeding behavior of tyrannosaurs. Some argue their immense size, musculature, lack of usable forelimbs, and olfactory abilities make them more suited to be scavengers. Many others believe that the animal hunted live prey. Absolute evidence is still lacking for a definitive answer, and may never be found. It is most likely that tyrannosaurs engaged in both predation and scavenging as it would have taken an extraordinary amount of calories to sustain these massive creatures and any and all meat would have been a welcome meal. One thing is for sure, whether scavenging a carcass or ambushing an unsuspecting victim, they were an incredible carnivore. In their time and since, they had no equal.
Provenance: acquired in 2013 from a USA collection
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