Dinosaur vision

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Dinosaur vision was, in general, better than the vision of most other reptiles, although vision varied between dinosaur species. Coelurosaurs, for example, had good stereoscopic or binocular vision, whereas large carnosaurs had poor binocular vision, comparable to that of modern alligators.



Most carnosaurs, including Carcharodontosaurus[1] and Allosaurus, did not have very good binocular vision, comparable to modern alligators.[2] They possessed binocular vision which was restricted to a region only 20° wide, which is understandable, as they hunted mostly large and slow prey. Their keenest sense was probably smell.


Deinonychosaurs, like Stenonychosaurus and Velociraptor, had better binocular vision than carnosaurs. Their binocular field was up to 60°.[2]


Among coelurosaurs, tyrannosauroidea had the best eyesight.[2] The position of their eyes suggests that they had a very well developed sense of vision.

The eye position of Tyrannosaurus rex was similar to that of modern humans, but their eyes and optic lobe were much larger than that of modern humans. T. rex, unlike most dinosaurs, had a combination of powerful eyesight and great sense of smell.


Ceratosaurs had eyes placed closer to the side. This widened their field of vision, but decreased their depth perception.[citation needed]


Pachycephalosaurs, like most of the plant-eaters, had eyes on the sides of the head, so they could quickly spot approaching predators. They also had depth perception.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Larsson, HCE (2001). "Endocranial anatomy of Carcharodontosaurus saharicus (Theropoda: Allosauroidea) and its implications for theropod brain evolution". In Tanke, DH; Carpenter, K. Mesozoic vertebrate life. Bloomington, Indiana: Indiana University Press. pp. 19–33. ISBN 0-253-33907-3.
  2. ^ a b c Stevens, Kent A. (12 June 2006). "Binocular vision in theropod dinosaurs" (PDF). Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology. 26 (2): 321–330. doi:10.1671/0272-4634(2006)26[321:BVITD]2.0.CO;2. Retrieved 2017-09-12.

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