Dinosaurs were reptiles with a predominance on the planet more than 150 million years ago. Although there were also small variants, some of the types reached incredible sizes, even higher than the dimensions of an elephant.
There were herbivorous and carnivorous varieties, while dinosaurs of multiple shapes and tones could be found. They became extinct during a period of environmental disorders on Earth, approximately 65 million years ago.
The importance of the dinosaurs lies in having been the animals that reached the highest level of development and the most widespread domain on the planet until the arrival of man. Its appearance took shape approximately 200 million years ago, being the Secondary (Mesozoic) era its period of greatest boom. In total, their leadership over the Earth’s ecosystems extended for around 160 million years.
The dinosaurs had great agility to move in different environments, the largest variants reached lengths of 50 meters, heights of 12 meters and weights that were around 100 tons. These terrestrial vertebrates were bipedal at first, but later most of the species evolved as quadrupeds. However, some dinosaurs were able to combine both forms of locomotion.
Characteristics Of Dinosaurs
There were theropod dinosaurs, which were carnivorous reptiles with teeth and claws that facilitated hunting, either individually or in groups.
There were also sauropods, varieties of herbivorous dinosaurs with great agility to escape the carnivorous dinosaurs and defend themselves.
The ornithischians, meanwhile, were the smallest variants, being usually an easy prey for the theropods.
They reproduced in an oviparous way. The dinosaurs placed their eggs in nests, which they prepared by digging in the ground or, in the case of the larger variants, constructing earth structures that reached heights of two meters.
On average they put a number close to 20 eggs oval or rounded, with sizes between a couple of centimeters to 35 centimeters, always according to the species in question.
The feeding of these reptiles was very broad. The carnivorous species ate herbivorous dinosaurs, other reptiles, mammals and even specimens of their own species in some cases.
The herbivorous species ate all kinds of vegetables, while certain dinosaurs were omnivores, that is, they included multiple foods in their diet.
4. Social habits
The dinosaurs moved from one place to another in groups, forming nesting communities and helping each other to care for the nests. They also hunted in groups.
They were divided into two large groups based on the shape of their hips. On the one hand the Saurischians, who presented the pubis forward and hips in the form of lizards. On the other hand the Ornitisquios, with the pubis oriented towards the rear area and hips shaped like a bird.
The finding of different bodily elements for the visual exhibition in fossils of dinosaurs allows to indicate that the main form of communication between these reptiles was the visual one.
On the other hand, everything indicates that most of the dinosaur species did not have vocalization skills of any kind.
7. Relationship with birds
The identification of around one hundred characteristics of the birds in different dinosaur species allows us to conclude that these enormous reptiles were the ancestors of the current birds.
The similarities are located mainly in the skeleton, specifically in the upper extremities, the neck or the pectoral bones, among other areas.
8. Hot-blooded reptiles
Although initially it was argued that dinosaurs were cold-blooded reptiles or ectothermic, the latest scientific theories indicate that they were endothermic or hot-blooded. Thanks to this feature they were able to maintain an intense activity for extended periods of time.
All species or varieties of dinosaurs had special characteristics for their survival. The carnivores had claws and teeth that transformed them into almost infallible hunters. The herbivores had colossal sizes in many cases.
Strengthening the relationship with birds, it was discovered that several types of dinosaurs included feathers. They were not the same as those we can find in birds, but they were used to protect themselves from low temperatures.