Eotriceratops vs Corythosaurus
We return to what is now the upper Horseshoe Canyon Formation in southern Alberta. Eotriceratops, fresh from his easy victory over Hesperornis earlier, now lounges in a damp mud wallow in the shadow of tall cypress trees surrounding it.
This behavior allows the elephant-sized dinosaur to escape the searing heat of the day in the shade, while the cool, wet mud helps keep his body at a comfortable temperature. He also helps to keep the swarms of buzzing insects that infest these swamps away from sensitive areas like the dinosaur’s nostrils and eyes. Millions of years later, large mammals like elephants, rhinos, and water buffalo will do the same thing.
Another large herbivore is in the area, though. The Corythosaurus is wandering through this damp, hazy woodland. The cuts he received after surviving the attack from the Utahraptor are healing slowly as the animal’s body combats the invading bacteria. Corythosaurus is stiff and achy, and in need of a place to rest.
Corythosaurus spots the cool mud patch currently occupied by the Eotriceratops. This shouldn’t be a problem, as Corythosaurus is used to sharing wallowing spaces with other large herbivores. He wades through the dense ferns and steps over fallen logs that cover the forest floor, approaching the spot where Eotriceratops is lounging.
Unfortunately for the hadrosaur, Eotriceratops is much larger than the horned dinosaurs he used to coexisting alongside, and is also much more aggressive. Sensing the approaching Corythosaurus, Eotriceratops rises quickly for an animal his size. Muddy water runs off his scaly hide as he grunts to his feet. The horned dinosaur stares wide-eyed at Corythosaurus, who pauses in mid-stride.
There’s a tense moment of silence, where the only sound piercing the thick, soupy air is the call of birds in the canopy and buzzing of insects near the ground. Suddenly, Eotriceratops charges. Galloping head-down towards the hapless Corythosaurus, he swings the tip of his brow horns directly into the hadrosaur.
The horns puncture the side of Corythosaurus, and for a moment the poor creature is lifted off his feet before being flung to the ground, vegetation snapping beneath his weight. Eotriceratops whirls around to where Corythosaurus has fallen. Like an enraged rhino, he gores his fallen rival with his blunt nasal horn. Corythosaurus flops helplessly on the ground, until he eventually stops moving.
As one final measure, Eotriceratops bites down on the neck of Corythosaurus with his powerful curved beak. This is little more than a formality, as the hadrosaur is already stone dead, and now a potential meal for some scavenging tyrannosaur.
Eotriceratops, in the meanwhile, returns to his wallowing hole, as if nothing had happened at all.