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Monday, August 22, 2011

More Dinosaurs

When I was in elementary school (probably 6-7 years old) we had a children's book about dinosaurs. I remember that Stegosaurus was one of my favorites, because of the fancy decorations on its back. As we walked through the exhibit at the LA Natural History Museum, I was delighted to come face to face with one:



Of course, now that I have arthritis with bone spurs on my spine, I can sympathize with the Stego even more :-)

Stego was displayed next to a nicely toothy predator:



Many of these fossilized skeletons are as much as 90% complete; others are less so, but the researchers have recreated the missing bits based on comparisons with closely related species. DNA evidence has helped to establish the relationships between some geographically separated species that are actually close cousins.

In the background is a very interesting display showing the skeletal similarities between some some of the flying dinosaurs (pteranodon and others) and several modern-day birds (a goose and an ostrich - or was it an emu?). The modern birds are the yellowish skeletons beyond the Allosaur.

All in all, it was a wonderful exhibit. Beautifully presented, and chock full of hands-on stuff for the kids (of whom there were literally hundreds at the museum that day). If you're in the LA area, the NHM is well worth a visit. The dino exhibit is crowded and noisy, but great fun anyway.

3 comments:

Connie Rose said...

I used to virtually hang out at that museum when I was a kid. I bet it's spectacular now ~ I haven't seen it since the 1960s!

neki desu said...

oh my! arthritis on those babies.

Christine Spangler said...

Have you read Remarkable Creatures by Tracy Chevalier? If you like dinosaurs and the history of natural history you might enjoy it. I just finished it and found it very interesting.