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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
It has long been believed that all non-avian dinosaurs were made extinct 65.5 to 66 million years ago when debris from a giant meteorite impact blocked out the sun from the Earth’s atmosphere. The meteorite impact changed the climate of Earth and killed its vegetation and was thought to have killed off most dinosaurs. A new discovery, reported by geology journal, may prove otherwise.
A team of researches from the University of Alberta, led by Larry Heaman from the Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, used Uranium Lead dating (a newer form of dinosaur dating) to determine the age of a hadrosaur femur bone to be 700,000 year after the supposed mass extinction. Heaman has a few different explanations as to how this dino could have escaped extinction; vegetation may not have been killed in all areas of the earth and this species of hadrosaur survived or the eggs of the hadrosaur may have been able to survive the extreme climate change. Heaman and his team plan to test more bones with uranium-lead dating and believe the end date of dinosaurs may have to be revised in the future.
The New York Times reported that researchers at an excavation in the Ischigualasto Formation of Argentina discovered a new type of dinosaur named Eodromaeus. You might call this new dino pint sized, weighing in at only 10 -14 pounds and about 4 feet in length. Paul Serano, a paleontologist at the University of Chicago who works on this study, stated, “It was very cute; you’d want it as a pet.” Before you decided to swap an Eodrmaeus for you Chihuahua beware, this cute little guy is a carnivore and has the long canines and a future ancestor to prove it.
Dr. Sereno and his colleagues believe the Eodrmaous to be one of the first relatives of theropod dinsosaurs, which include the mighty Tyrannosaurus rex. How could this tiny dinosaur be related to the T-rex? The Eodraeus has long canines perfect for meet eating, a sleek, agile body shape, and was quick on its feet. The excavation in Argentina where the Eodromaeus was unearthed is a site where some of the oldest remains of dinosaur have been found. The Eodromaeus found lived 230 million years ago, which places it in the Triassic period when dinosaurs first began to emerge. Dr. Serano believes that this discovery, “ gives us the earliest snapshot of dinosaurs.”
Most folks rarely give much of a thought to Torosaurus, except for the trivia answers to “Which animal has the longest skull of any land creature, ever?” But some people seem to feel inexplicably attached to this name, often and incorrectly translated as "bull lizard" (it's got big horns, and was ornery like a raging bull!). In reality it means "perforated lizard", in reference to the holes in its frill. These innocuously incomplete frill holes are at the center of the newest paleocontroversy, which has some scientists ready to erase the name Torosaurus from the dictionary altogether!