The Frightening Power of T. Rex’s Bite

The Tyrannosaurus rex was truly a magnificent predator. They captured the imagination of children and adults alike with their combination of size and ferocity. Everything about them just screamed power, and for that exact reason, the Jurassic Park films thrived as much as they did. Their biggest disadvantage where their small arms, which were mostly useless when it came to hunting.

An aspect about the T. rex that is often overlooked is their powerful bite. A recent study showed that they were capable of crushing other dinosaur’s bones with ease. Interestingly, they did not have the ability to clamp their jaws to crush bones. Instead, they just used their powerful bite and strong teeth to accomplish this. The reason they did this is that the bones of their prey contain a cavity which is filled with marrow and phosphate salts. And marrow is one of the most nutrient-dense foods available. Some modern animals still do this as well. Carnivorous animals like hyenas and grey wolves constantly crush bones of their prey. Reptiles, on the other hand, do not do because their teeth structure does not allow them to close their mouth in a way that is suitable for crushing bones. The T. rex shared this same fate, but the sheer power of their bite and the strength of their teeth allowed them to crack open the bones, getting to the marrow, anyway.

While performing tests in a recent study, scientists used birds and crocodiles, since they are the closest thing we currently have to dinosaurs. Extrapolating the evidence presented during testing, the scientists determined that the T. rex had a bite of around 8,000 newtons. This is twice as strong when compared to today’s crocodiles. The pressure that they could exert at the tips of their mouths was somewhere in the region of three thousand megapascals. This pressure and the constant biting down on the bones caused them to shatter and allowed the T. rex to get the most out of their every meal.

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