Finding dinosaur footprints is not an everyday thing: if the footprints are in series and allow you to reconstruct walk and speed with which the animal moved, then it is really an exception. As it happened in Wyoming (USA), where well printed on the rocks of what 66 million years was a sea coast some prints of T. Rex have been found. The number of fingerprints, the state of preservation, their distance and the pressure of the different areas of support then allowed to extrapolate the dimensions of the animal and the speed of the walk: 8 kilometers per hour. Definitely less than a sprinter or even a human marathon runner.

Image The T. Rex footprints of Wyoming. | Jessica Smith

2 meters of T. Rex. The footprints are three, one very well preserved: this is what allowed Scott Persons, paleontologist of the University of Alberta (Canada), to affirm that it is the footprint of a carnivore, and since the only carnivores of that area they were T. Rex, the conclusion is obvious. Persons deduced the height of the dinosaur from the footprint: it was a very young specimen, probably from 1.5 to 2 meters high. Once the measurements have been defined, the distance between the footprints has allowed him to calculate the speed of the walk of that specimen: between 4.5 and 8 kilometers per hour.

Who would have won … It doesn't seem like a great speed. "No, " commented fellow paleontologist Thomas Holts: "that value only says that that specimen was advancing at that speed. It should be emphasized that it was on a sandy and wet coast, and the pace was necessarily slowed down. "

Although in the past other researches have reached different results, with decidedly higher speed values, the idea is emerging that these saurians could move at an average speed not exceeding 11 kilometers per hour. Even without bringing up a hypothetical Usain Bolt of 66 million years ago, which would have touched 36 km / h in ten seconds or so, if ever our primordial ancestors had lived with these beasts they would have had no difficulty in breaking away from difficult situations .