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KU Researcher: T.Rex Was Predator, Not Scavenger

burnham-shortPaleontologist David Burnham of the KU Biodiversity Institute (Photo Credit: KU Biodiversity Institute)

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — Paleontologists long have debated whether the Tyrannosaurus rex was a vicious killing machine or a scavenger. But now David Burnham of the University of Kansas says new evidence shows the dinosaur is "the monster of our dreams." The new evidence is a T. rex tooth lodged in the fossilized spine of a hadrosaur. The plant-eater seems to have survived the attack. And because the T. rex regularly shed teeth, the hunter would have simply grown a new one. The university said in a news release that Burnham was part of a team that analyzed graduate student Robert DePalma's fossil discovery from the Hell Creek Formation of South Dakota. The team describes the find in the current issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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