Above: Underside of the skull of Leonardo, the Brachylophosaurus mummy. By Ed T., from Flikr. Licensed.
My last post reiterated a statement from this MSNBC article, that gut contents of the famous hadrosaur mummy "Leonardo" seem to contradict Williams et al.'s findings, because the plant matter was
a) chopped or sheared, not chewed, and
b) mainly coniferous, indicating that hadrosaurs were browsers rather than grazers.
Well, I checked up on the source that MSNBC used for this information (Leonardo is, despite documentaries on the History Channel, not fully studied and published on yet). That lead me to another MSNBC article on Leo, which appears to state the opposite! From the older, cited article:
- "An analysis of the gut contents from an exceptionally well-preserved juvenile dinosaur fossil suggests that the hadrosaur's last meal included plenty of well-chewed leaves digested into tiny bits."
- "An analysis of pollen found in the specimen's gut region revealed a variety of plants, including ferns, conifers and flowering plants. Although the pollen could have been ingested when the dinosaur drank water, the tiny leaf bits, under 5 millimeters (a quarter-inch) in length, indicate that Leonardo was a big browser of plants, Chin said."