Therizinosaur Dinners

I was reading a Dinosaur encyclopedia and ran across Therizinosaurs, so had to share their goofy look with my son at lunch.

Therizinosaurs are sometimes called the “oddest” looking dinosaurs, as they average about 30 feet, have squat feet and legs, big pot bellies, small heads, and winged arms tipped with very long claws (one meter/three feet).


But I also thought of something about their nature which I have not read elsewhere.

In the encyclopedia they theorize that they use their claws defensively, to fend off attacking tyrannosaurids, for instance. However, since they are obviously plant-eaters and are said to resemble giraffes with the long reach of their necks, it seems obvious to me that perhaps the analogy moves more towards sloths or anteaters. Perhaps their claws were instead used to ferrets out insects inside bark and/or inside large mounds? Those meter-long claws would make phenomenal digging tools.

Furthermore, CT scans of related skulls by Lautenschlager and others have revealed they have large forebrains and well developed senses, such as balance, hearing, and smell. These could all be useful in ferreting out moving insects inside other objects. Their relatively small heads would also enable them to burrow inside objects more easily.

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