Dinosaurs are a group of reptiles that is no longer found, and only fossils remain for their study. They lived on Earth during the Mesozoic era (Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous), about 230 million to 65 million years ago. While humans have been around for only two million years.
Dinosaurs are now a major attraction in museums around the world.
Here we’re going to look at 20 facts about Dinosaurs.
1. The term “Dinosaur” was named by palaeontologist Sir Richard Owen in 1841. Moreover, it is derived from Ancient Greek, meaning “terrible lizard”.
2. Dinosaurs have been found on every continent, including Antarctica.
3. According to scientists, birds have evolved from dinosaurs, and therefore dinosaurs are actually not extinct.
4. Dinosaurs are divided into two groups, based on their hip structure – the first one “Saurischia” (lizard-hipped), and the second “Ornithischia” (bird-hipped).
5. There are more than 1000 different species of dinosaurs have been identified and named. However, there are still frequent new discoveries.
6. All dinosaurs lay eggs. Eggs are usually laid in a nest. Even, around 40 kinds of dinosaur eggs have been discovered.
7. The dinosaur with the longest name is Micropachycephalosaurus, meaning “small thick-headed lizard”, and its fossils have been found in China.
8. The fastest dinosaur was the Ornithomimus. It could run at a speed of about 43½ miles per hour (70 km/h).
9. The first known dinosaurs were bipedal predators that were 1 to 2 metres long. Dinosaurs that could easily walk on two legs were called bipeds.
10. The biggest meat-eater dinosaur was Spinosaurus, which could reach a length of 12.6 to 18 meters (41 to 59 ft), and weighing about 7–20.9 tonnes (7.7–23 short tons).
11. The largest known dinosaur was Argentinosaurus. It was about 30–35 meters (98–115 ft) long and weighs up to 80–100 tonnes (88–110 short tons).
12. The tallest plant-eater was Brachiosaurus. It was up to 18–21 meters (59–69 ft) long and weighed 28.3 to 58 metric tons (31.2 to 64 short tons).
13. The dinosaur known for the thickest skull was Pachycephalosaurus. Its skull grew up to 10 inches (25 cm) thick, which safely cushioned its tiny brain.
14. The largest known flying reptile was Quetzalcoatlus. It had a wingspan as large as 52 feet (15.9 m).
15. Villagers in central China have long been using dinosaur fossils as traditional medicines. They believed that the fossils were from “dragon bones”.
16. In 1923, explorer Roy Chapman Andrews found the first dinosaur nest known to science in the Gobi Desert of Mongolia. Before he found the nest, scientists were unsure about how dinosaurs were born.
17. Triceratops had the largest skull with a solid shield as compared to any other dinosaur. It was up to 2 meters (6.5 feet) long, with a bony shield over its neck.
18. The earliest known dinosaur was Eoraptor, which means “dawn stealer”. It was a meat-eater, living approximately 230 million years ago.
19. Megalosaurus (meaning “Great Lizard”) was the first-ever dinosaur to be named. It was named by Reverend William Buckland in 1824. It was about 7 to 9 meters long and weighing one to three tonnes.
20. The dinosaur with the smallest brain was the Stegosaurus. In fact, its brain was about the size of a walnut, which means only 3 cm long and weighing 75 grams.