How high did the sauropod dinosaurs hold their heads? It is a simple question, but for years it has been part of an
Christian's conclusions suggest that the necks of Euhelopus and similarly proportioned dinosaurs were adapted for browsing at a range of vertical levels, and that these large-bodied animals would have saved energy by standing in one place, browsing among high trees, rather than shuffling about in search of low-lying food. If this is correct, it may help explain why different sauropods lived beside one another; some may have browsed in the trees while others specialized in lower-lying food, reducing competition. It would have cost these dinosaurs a lot of energy to raise their heads, but not as much as walking over a larger area in search of lower-lying food. And as Christian concludes, "During a food shortage, raising the neck was probably even essential for surviving: it is better to get little than nothing at all." While the posture and habits of other sauropod dinosaurs, such as the famous Diplodocus and Apatosaurus, are still being hotly debated, it seems that dinosaurs like Euhelopus kept their heads in the trees.
Christian, A. (2010). Some sauropods raised their necks--evidence for high browsing in Euhelopus zdanskyi Biology Letters DOI: 10.1098/rsbl.2010.0359