Pregnancy Is Tough, But Way Better Than Laying Eggs (Sorry Dinosaurs)
Sure, carrying a baby for nine months and then breastfeeding for months after that are no walk in the park, but according to new research, the fact that dinosaurs didn’t do those things led to their demise.
Researchers at the University of Zurich recently published their findings in Biology Letters. They found that dinosaurs’ relative size to their offspring put them at a huge disadvantage from other animals. According to a news release, mother dinosaurs that weighed about 10 tons were about 2,500 heavier than their newborn dino babies. (Compare that to a 160 pound human mom who’s only about 21 times the weight of her seven-and-a-half pound newborn!) Because dinosaurs laid eggs, they had to make small babies, since a bigger egg would be more likely to break (egg shells are thin and fragile so the developing babies can get enough oxygen).
So they had teeny babies that had to compete with other animals for food, unlike mammals like us that can feed babies using our own milk. Some of the smaller dinos took to the air and later evolved into birds. The others? Well, we all know they didn’t fare so well.
Are you as intrigued by these findings as we are? Are you sometimes amazed by your own pregnancy?
Plus, more from The Bump: