Scientists now say that the "Terror of the Cretaceous" may not have been that bad after all. A new study indicates that T. rex had a hard time getting its jaws into fast, agile prey.
An American team of palaeontologists have used detailed computer models to work out the weight of a typical Tyrannosaurus and determine how it ran and turned. The results indicate a 6 to 8-tonne T. rex was unlikely to have topped 40km/h (25mph) and would have taken a few seconds to swivel 45 degrees.
The computer model estimated that a high center of mass and large inertia would have had been responsible for the slow movement and that T. rex could have been out-maneuvered by agile prey.
Dr Paul Barrett, of London's Natural History Museum, commented, "This is another finding that undermines the kind of idea of T. rex as a super-predator. But it has this huge mouth filled with 60-odd, 30cm-long teeth, so it was still a formidable animal."
The research was published in the Journal of Theoretical Biology.