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  Tooth and saberJun 09, 2016 10:27 PM PDT | url
 
Added 1 new A* page:Scientists calculate that saber-toothed cats had relatively weak bites: a Smilodon, for instance—the type on which the cats in today's page were mostly based (I should note that not all "saber-toothed cats" were actually cats: for instance, the first saber-toothed animal was a mammal-like reptile, a precursor to mammals, and a couple orders of later saber-tooths were more closely related to marsupials than cats)—had a bite strength only a third as strong as a modern lion.
 
One theory to explain this apparent disadvantage notes that while the muscle powering the lower jaw of the saber-tooths was relatively weak, the muscle attaching to the base of the skull from the neck was larger than a modern cat's, suggesting that they stabbed their enlarged canine teeth (some got up to nearly 20 inches long) into their prey with a powerful downward motion of their neck.
 
 
 
 
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