Utahraptor: The Teeth of Utah’s State Dinosaur

Believe it or not, Utah recently joined the handful of states with a state dinosaur. In early 2018, the Utah Senate designated the Utahraptor as the state’s official dinosaur. Whether you’re a dinosaur connoisseur or a more casual fan, today we want to take a closer look at every dentist’s favorite thing about dinosaurs: their teeth!

utahraptor dinosaur flasing its sharp teeth

Discovery

In 1975, the first Utahraptor specimens were found near the town of Moab by Jim Jensen. More discoveries occurred in the late 20th century. Utahraptor fossils have been dated to the early Cretaceous period. If you’re interested in learning more, Brigham Young University has the largest collection of Utahraptor fossils.

Get to Know the Utahraptor

The largest Utahraptor specimens found are around 19 feet long and would have weighed around 1,100 pounds. They would have stood a little taller than an adult male. When alive, their environment was semiarid with prairies, forests, and open woodlands. They were carnivores who relied on the ambush to kill their prey as they weren’t particularly fast.

Scientists believe that the main prey of the Utahraptor were large dinosaurs such as iguanodontians and therizinosauroids. When push came to shove, Utahraptors relieved on their massive jaws and sharp teeth to dispatch their prey. As a member of the raptor family, Utahraptors possessed sharp teeth that easily tore into flesh.

At Midtown Dental, we’re proud to provide quality dental care for the residents of Logan, Utah. Although your teeth do not have much in common with those of the Utahraptor, it is important to keep them healthy and strong so that you can chew the food you eat and flash your smile in pictures. Be sure to brush your teeth twice daily for two minutes each time, floss every day, and visit our office regularly for cleanings and exams. Contact us today to ask our team any questions or to schedule your next appointment.

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Midtown Dental

Midtown Dental