Travel back in time this summer at Zoo Boise when dinosaurs return! As you explore the zoo, you will encounter six animatronic dinosaur exhibits. Thanks to fossils, archeologists can tell us a great deal about these prehistoric reptiles – including their teeth!
Some species of dinosaurs are known only from their fossilized teeth. Teeth tell us a lot about how a dinosaur ate, how it caught its food and how much digestion was required (did it chew its food, or swallow it whole?).
Here are some of the dinosaurs that will be at the zoo and what kind of chompers to look out for:
Tyrannosaurus Rex: A single T-rex tooth was approximately six inches long, the same length as its claws. Because the T-rex was a meat-eater, they had sharp, pointed teeth for tearing flesh and crushing bones. In fact, this 6,000-pound tyrant could eat 150 pounds of food in one sitting!
Triceratops: While their beaks didn’t contain any teeth, a triceratops had flat teeth inside of their cheeks that were used to chew fibrous plants.
Stegosaurus: Much like a triceratops, these dinos had varied teeth, but mostly had blunt, leaf-like teeth for chewing tough vegetation.
Iguanodons: As evidenced by its name, Iguanodons had teeth similar to modern-day iguanas. The crown of each tooth was curved.
When you take your kids to the exhibit, see if they can point out the differences between each dinosaur’s set of teeth. The dinosaur exhibit will be at Zoo Boise through September 1st.