KILLER T-Rexes did not look so fierce due to lips covering their terrifying teeth, scientists say.
Experts now believe the dinosaur kept its mouth closed with thin, scaly lips[/caption]
But experts now believe the T-Rex kept its mouth closed with thin, scaly lips, like modern-day lizards and Komodo dragons.
Analysis of tooth fossils did not find any damage or wear, and teeth were small enough to be concealed inside mouths.
Portsmouth University’s Dr Mark Witton said: “Lipless dinosaurs were deeply rooted in popular culture through films and documentaries like Jurassic Park and Walking with Dinosaurs.
“It reflected preferences for a ferocious-looking aesthetic rather than scientific thinking.
“This means a lot of our favourite dinosaur depictions are incorrect, including the iconic Jurassic Park T-Rex.”
They compared their skulls to crocodiles, which have no lips, and lizards, which do.
Prof Kirstin Brink, from the University of Manitoba in Canada, said: “Teeth not covered by lips risk drying out and can be subject to more damage during feeding or fighting. We see this in crocodiles, but not in dinosaurs.”
Dr Thomas Cullen, from Alabama’s Auburn University, added: “The data suggests that all theropod dinosaurs had teeth completely covered by labial scales when the mouth was closed.”