A scientist at the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Paleontology is throwing cold water on the latest theories about one of the world's most popular dinosaurs.
A 2014 paper on Spinosaurus came to the conclusion that the sail backed animal popularized in the movie Jurassic Park III spent most of its time in the water like a crocodile and not on land like other dinosaurs. However, Dr. Don Henderson thinks that's wrong.
"Part of the original author's argument was, with the centre of mass so far forward in the chest, away from the hips, it probably wasn't walking much on land," explained the Tyrrell's Curator of Dinosaurs. "I redid the analysis and it's (centre of balance) back near the hips."
Henderson created a 3D digital dinosaur for testing. He found a couple of other issues with Spinosaurus being a water dweller.
"Birds and extinct dinosaurs, their bodies have a system of air sacs and I could not get the model to sink, even if I really deflated the lungs," he told Drum FM. "Also, I found tnat it wouldn't float upright; alligators and birds float on the water (and) they're fine, but this thing tended to roll onto its side, not good if you're spending a lot of time in the water."
"Animals like grizzly bears like to eat salmon, but they tend to stay on the shore or go out into the waterfalls and grab things, but they're not swimming around catching them," said Henderson. "Spinosaurus isn't that radically different from other carnivorous dinosaurs; they're mainly land animals."
Henderson debunked another popular Spinosaurus myth from the Jurassic Park movies. He says the creature, which had a mouth shaped like a crocodile's, had a weak bite and never could have won a fight with an adult T-rex. His findings can be found through this link.