2 Two Favorite Dinosaurs

816 WordsMar 18, 20104 Pages
{draw:frame} Millions of years ago, long before there were any people, there were dinosaurs. Dinosaurs were reptiles that lived on Earth from about 225 to 65 million years ago. There were many different sizes and shapes of dinosaurs. Some were meat-eaters and some were plant-eaters. Some dinosaurs were very big and some were much smaller. {draw:frame} A fossil is the remains or trace of something that was once alive, but is now long-gone and dead. We know that dinosaurs existed because of their fossil remains, mostly bones and shells that we have found. The dinosaurs (except the birds) went extinct, probably due to the after-effects of an asteroid which hit the Earth 65 million years ago. Its impact caused huge fires, volcanic…show more content…
It was once proposed that this none-too-bright herbivore had supplementary grey matter located in its hip region, but paleontologists quickly soured on this "brain in the butt" theory. 2. No one knows why Stegosaurus had plates... - Did Stegosaurus evolve its thin, tough, roughly triangular plates as a form of defense against larger predators? Were they a sexually selected characteristic, meaning males with bigger plates had a better chance of mating with females? Or could they have been used to regulate this dinosaur 's body temperature? It 's still a mystery. 3. ...or exactly how these plates were arranged* along its back.* - The name Stegosaurus means "roofed lizard," reflecting the belief of 19th-century paleontologists that this dinosaur 's plates lay flat along its back. Various reconstructions have been offered since then, the most convincing of which has the plates alternating in parallel rows (and facing pointy side up) along Stegosaurus ' spine. 4. Stegosaurus ' spiked tail is called* a "*thagomizer*."*- Way back in 1982, a famous Far Side cartoon showed a group of cavemen clustered around a picture of a Stegosaurus ' tail; one of them points to the sharp spikes and says, "Now this end is called the thagomizer...after the late Thag Simmons." The word "thagomizer" has been used by paleontologists ever since. 6. It was once thought* that Stegosaurus walked on two legs.* - Because it was discovered such a long time ago, Stegosaurus is the poster-lizard

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