2015 GSA Annual Meeting in Baltimore, Maryland, USA (1-4 November 2015)

Paper No. 222-7
Presentation Time: 9:00 AM-6:30 PM


NICOLO, Christopher P., ABNEY, Cooper and MCKENZIE, Scott C., Geology, Mercyhurst University, 501 East 38th St., Erie, PA 16546, cnicol16@lakers.mercyhurst.edu

Allosaurus and Stegosaurus are iconic dinosaurs of the Jurassic. The predator-prey relationship between these two animals may have been crucial in the development of stegosaur plates. We postulate the skull morphology of Allosaurus dictated its predatory strategy which in turn affected the enlargement of Stegosaurus’ dorsal plates. We hope to determine, through examination of fossils and research on both dinosaurs, that Stegosaurus increased its plate size as the Jurassic period progressed, to protect against Allosaurus’ unusual killing method. The resulting arms race may have shaped both creatures. To prove this theory, we examine the ancestral evolution of both the Stegosaur and Allosaur families, as well as searching for predator and prey relationships between members of both groups around the world.