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Now Open on Level 4
Meet the ancient rulers of our planet as you examine fossil replicas of dinosaurs and prehistoric sea creatures. Orlando Science Center showcases the dinosaurs in their disparate land and aquatic settings as guests become part of a paleontological excavation site.
Uncover 'fossils' in the dig pit and examine fossilized dino eggs
Explore displays that feature ancient land and marine reptiles
Compare reptiles and dinosaurs to see similarities and differences
Discover denizens of the ancient oceans such as Elasmosaurus and Tylosaurus
Gasps of awe and wonder as children enter DinoDigs will now be joined by another sound — squeals of delight — as they uncover fossils in Jurassic Ridge, a 540-square-foot excavation site.
Most dinosaur exhibits have a look-but-don’t-touch policy, but Jurassic Ridge encourages hands- (and feet-) on learning. Become an honorary paleontologist and carefully explore this fragile dig site to help Orlando Science Center discover unique fossils from the Jurassic period.
What once roamed the earth more than 80 million years ago, scientists have found a new species of horned dinosaurs. Weighing in at two tons, this 20-foot-long beast is one of the oldest specimens known to date of the ceratopsid group!
A distant cousin to the triceratops, this massive dinosaur’s name Xenoceratops foremostensis means “alien-horned face.” The beastly creature has a rare pattern of horns on its head and above its brow.
The Xenoceratops is adorned with two hooks jutting from its forehead. It has two massive spikes that rest at the top of its head and a frilly shield around its neck.
In 2002, paleontologists found the second-oldest mammal skull just outside of a rural village in northern Argentina. At the time, the skull was mostly hidden in rock and its identity remained a mystery. In 2005, scientists sent the skull to a technician who, until recently, has been removing the rock from around the fossil – finally revealing a saber-toothed, squirrel-like creature with a striking similarity to the Ice Age character Scrat. The new species, named Cronopio dentiacutus for its narrow snout and long fangs, was about 8 to 9 inches (20 to 23 centimeters) long and likely used its pointy teeth to hunt and eat insects.
Both mammals and dinosaurs appeared near the end of the Triassic period, some 220 million years ago. When dinosaurs disappeared about 65 million years ago, mammals thrived. But ancient mammal fossils are still exceedingly rare, mostly because of their small sizes. As a result, paleontologists know of roughly one genus of mammal for every million years between 65 million and 220 million years ago—making for a woefully incomplete record.
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