Fewer tyrannosaurs to have lived on Earth than previously thought

Previously estimated at 2.5 billion individuals, the total population of tyrannosaurs having lived on Earth has just been revised downwards. It would have been “only” 1.7 billion. In question, a revision of certain parameters taken into account in the calculations of population.

You may also be interested

[EN VIDÉO] Interview: three exceptional dinosaurs Dinosaurs are amazing creatures by their nature, their abilities or even their…

Among the dinosaurs that reigned on Earth, the Tyrannosaurus Rex is certainly one of the most emblematic. If the paleontological studies on the fossil remains of this giant predator who lived at the end of the Cretaceous (between 68 and 66 million years ago) bring us a wealth of information on its morphology or its habits of life, there is a question which remains difficult to solve.

How many tyrannosaurs, in total, have been able to set foot on earth? In 2021, a study proposed the figure of 2.5 billion people. But this result has remained disputed. And yes, if today the human population can be estimated thanks to the census, this method did not exist in the Cretaceous. It should also be remembered that the process of fossilization requires certain very specific conditions which are not necessarily met when an individual dies. It is even rather rare for a fossil to form, be preserved for millions of years and arrive under the trowel of paleontologists in good condition.

An update of the calculation parameters according to new paleontological discoveries

However, the fossils found, even if they are extremely few, can make it possible to estimate the number of tyrannosaurs having one day lived on Earth. A new study published in palaeontology thus proposes the figure of 1.7 billion individuals, or 800 million less than the previous estimate. How to explain such a drop?

Quite simply by updating more realistic parameters in the population calculation, following our ever finer understanding of the biology of tyrannosaurs. Life expectancy, reproduction rate and reproductive value of individuals have thus been revised. Calculations suggest that 90,000 generations of T-Rex have thus succeeded each other, each of them having about 19,000 individuals. This produces a maximum of 1.7 billion individuals in total.

Interestingly, this means that only one fossil is found out of 52.5 million individuals, illustrating the difficulty of the fossilization process.

Written by Emilie Grenaud

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

GIPHY App Key not set. Please check settings

    Anna Biolay criticized on her physique: her mother Chiara Mastroianni denounces “abominable attacks”: Current Woman Le MAG

    Ford electric cars get access to the Supercharger network