Are dinosaurs still alive today?
The remarkable answer is that dinosaurs are still alive,
but you don’t need to go looking for them on some deserted island.
They’re actually all around us,
because all birds are dinosaurs.
Not only did birds evolve from dinosaurs,
scientifically they are dinosaurs,
just like how us humans are primates.
Sixty-six million years ago an asteroid impact
did kill off a lot of the dinosaurs,
But one lineage survived,
and those are the ancestorsof all modern birds.
To this date paleontologists have never found a non-bird dinosaur
that was alive after the extinction event.
Even if we did,
we’d be too excited to keep it to ourselves.
Now that we know birds are dinosaurs,
some of you may be disappointed that
modern dinosaurs that are alive today
don’t really look like the dinosaurs from the Mesozoic Era.
But new research is finding that dinosaurs had a lot of
the important features we associate with birds today.
For example, we now know that
many of the dinosaur groups had feathers,
or precursors to feathers we call protofeathers.
Because these dinosaurs clearly didn’t fly,
we think that feathers first evolved
for regulating body heat or for display.
Dinosaurs, like birds, already had high metabolisms,
hollow bones that made them lighter, wishbones,
and also relatively large brains for their body size.
So collectively, dinosaurs may have looked a lot like birds.
And if you were dropped off in an environment in the Mesozoic era,
you might actually mistake some of the dinosaurs for turkeys.
So the next time you see a humble pigeon,
just remember the fact that they’re part of a very successful lineage
that survived the mass extinction event 66 million years ago
that wiped off all the other dinosaur groups.
Thanks for watching.
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