Dinosaurs such as Tyrannosaurus rex have actually been incorrectly displayed in movies such as Jurassic Park to have “ferocious-looking” exposed teeth, according to brand-new research study.
Scientists have actually rather discovered that numerous predatory types would have had scaly, lizard-like lips covering and sealing their mouths.
Theropod dinosaurs, a group of two-legged dinosaurs that includes the velociraptor in addition to birds, were formerly believed to have lipless mouths where noticeable upper teeth hung over their lower jaws, comparable to the mouth of a crocodile.
But a global group of scientists now think these dinosaurs had lips comparable to those of lizards and their relative the tuatara – an unusual reptile discovered just in New Zealand.
The researchers analyzed the tooth structure, use patterns and jaw morphology of lipped and lipless reptile groups and discovered that theropod mouth anatomy and performance looks like that of lizards more than crocodiles.
They said this indicates lizard-like oral tissues, consisting of flaky lips covering the teeth.
The scientists said these lips were most likely not muscular, like they remain in mammals, as many reptile lips cover their teeth however cannot be moved separately or curled back into a snarl.
Co-author Dr Mark Witton, from the University of Portsmouth, said: “Dinosaur artists have gone back and forth on lips since we started restoring dinosaurs during the 19th century, but lipless dinosaurs became more prominent in the 1980s and 1990s.
“They were then deeply rooted in popular culture through films and documentaries — Jurassic Park and its sequels, Walking With Dinosaurs, and so on.
“Curiously, there was never a dedicated study or discovery instigating this change and, to a large extent, it probably reflected preference for a new, ferocious-looking aesthetic rather than a shift in scientific thinking.
“We’re upending this popular depiction by covering their teeth with lizard-like lips.
“This means a lot of our favourite dinosaur depictions are incorrect, including the iconic Jurassic Park T rex.”
The results, released in the journal Science, discovered that dinosaur teeth were no bigger, relative to skull size, than those of contemporary lizards, recommending they were not too huge to be covered with lips.