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Spinosaur brain shows “preadaptation” for catching fish

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At ScienceDaily, we learn that brain material survived fromn a spinosaur:

“Despite their unusual ecology, it seems the brains and senses of these early spinosaurs retained many aspects in common with other large-bodied theropods — there is no evidence that their semi-aquatic lifestyles are reflected in the way their brains are organised,” said University of Southampton PhD student Chris Barker, who led the study.

One interpretation of this evidence is that the theropod ancestors of spinosaurs already possessed brains and sensory adaptations suited for part-time fish catching, and that ‘all’ spinosaurs needed to do to become specialised for a semi-aquatic existence was evolve an unusual snout and teeth.

“Because the skulls of all spinosaurs are so specialised for fish-catching, it’s surprising to see such ‘non-specialised’ brains,” said contributing author Dr Darren Naish. “But the results are still significant. It’s exciting to get so much information on sensory abilities — on hearing, sense of smell, balance and so on — from British dinosaurs. Using cutting-edged technology, we basically obtained all the brain-related information we possibly could from these fossils,” Dr Naish said.

That’s “Evolution” for you. Always thinking ahead.

The paper is open access.

Comments
You need to keep in mind that these are "British dinosaurs" which are far superior to your garden variety non-British dinosaurs......chuckdarwin
February 21, 2023
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