What were dinosaurs?
Dinosaurs were members of the reptile family. They first appeared about 225 million years ago. For 160 million years dinosaurs ruled the Earth. They walked on straight legs, tucked underneath their bodies, and they lived on land. The word dinosaur means ‘terrible lizard’!
It is true ?
All dinosaurs were big.
No. The tiny Compsognathus was about the same size as a chicken.
What did dinosaurs eat?
Some dinosaurs were carnivores. This means they ate meat and fish. Some were herbivores. These dinosaurs ate plants. A third group were omnivores. They had a mixed diet and ate both meat and plants. Some dinosaurs swallowed stones, which crushed food inside their stomachs so it was easier to digest.
When Ankyiosaurus filled its bony plates with blood it could have blushed pink !
What colour were dinosaurs?
No one knows what colour dinosaurs were. Perhaps some had skins that matched their surroundings, making them hard to see. Some might have had bright markings to attract mates, or scare others away.
Which creatures flew in the sky?
At the same time as dinosaurs walked on the land, other reptiles flew in the sky and swam in the sea. The sky reptiles were pterosaurs, which means ‘winged lizards’. Their wings were not made from feathers, like a bird’s, but from stretched skin.
Which creatures swam in the sea?
The sea was home to many different reptiles. Some had( very long necks. These were plesiosaurs, which means ‘near lizards’. Others looked like today’s dolphins. They were ichthyosaurs, which means ‘fish lizards’. Ichthyosaurs were fast and agile swimmers.
It is true ?
Open pterosaur was as big as a small plane.
Yes. Quetzalcoatius was an enormous pterosaur. It had wings 12 metres across. It is the biggest flying creature ever.
What did pterosaurs eat?
Some pterosaurs ate fish, which they scooped from the sea with their long beaks. Some pterosaurs may have held lots of fish inside their cheek pouches, as pelicans do today.
The short-necked plesiosaur Liopleurdon grew to 23 metres and weighed 50 tonnes. It was a giant sea monster !