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Theropod vs. Ornithischian bone

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I have heard that dinosaur bones are different in structure. I have some questions. Are all theropod bones hollow including sauropods? And are all ornithischian bones more solid? And can that be tell from a small fragment of bone? 

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The bone structure does play a huge part in the ID of the piece.

I am not an expert on dino bones, I work at a dinosaur museum, but we only have 3 types of bones there, Sauropod (Apatosaur most likely) Allosaur, and Stegosaur. <----Jurassic aged

We also have footprints from Iguanodontids and Ornithicans. The Ornithican bones are found on the next hillside over! <---- Cretaceous aged rocks


Having the 3 sizes of dinosaurs on the Jurassic side there makes it easy to determine.

The 2 dinosaurs on the other side of our outcrop are very different size wise and easy to tell apart.


That being said, the stegosaur and Apatosaur bones are MUCH more robust than the Allosaur. (Jurassic bones)


The ornithican bones have huge cavities in them, much like bird bones and in fact dinosaurs like ornithomimus the name means "bird-mimic".


There are basic rules you can follow for each kind. I am really just learning and it seems that my first step is to learn the anatomy of the dinosaurs!


You can start by just looking at differences between sauropods and theropods, then narrow down from there!


That is how I am handling it atleast :P



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