Tyrannosaurs bit each other's faces, fighting for territory, females and higher status, according to Canadian paleontologists from the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Paleontology. They reported this in an article in the journal Paleobiology.
The skulls of tyrannosaurs and other dinosaurs are often marked, but their origins have not been studied much. The researchers analyzed 202 Tyrannosaurus rex skulls and found a total of 324 tooth marks on them. Judging by the size of the markings, the animals were approximately the same size, and apparently of the same species.
At the same time, young tyrannosaurs had much less marks - obviously, fights were the lot of older individuals. Large males, obviously, did not try to attack small ones, but chose an opponent of similar size.
This behavior makes tyrannosaurs related to modern animals, the researchers note - many of them fight among themselves after puberty. This allows them to test themselves and determine their place in the pack. It is possible that in tyrannosaurs, fights had the same purpose - to reclaim territory, increase their status, or get the desired female.