Common Misconceptions About Dinosaurs

There’s a lot of myths about dinosaurs that many of us have come to believe as facts. For starters, dinosaurs couldn’t fly, nor did a meteor wipe them all out. What other common misconceptions about dinosaurs have you thought were facts? Uncover and spread the truths behind these popular dino-centric myths!

They Dragged Their Tails

Although their tails were massive, dinosaurs didn’t have to drag them, as some people assume. Many species of dinosaurs used their tails for balance or stability. For example, velociraptors used their tails to increase stability as they made sharp turns while running after prey. Others used their tails for defense, as theirs had spikes or bony shapes.

A Meteor Wiped Them All Out

A meteor collided with Earth and killed off all the dinosaurs? Not exactly. While a meteor did kill off most of the species, a few managed to stick around, and some even exist today. For example, there are some similarities between dinosaurs and birdsbecause some winged species survived the meteor; these survivors are ancestors of many of the birds we see today, which evolved with time. So in some ways, dinosaurs still exist, and we see them just about every day.

They Ruled the Land, Air, and Sea

Another common misconception about dinosaurs is that they ruled over land, air, and sea: these were the ferocious beasts of the time. However, land-, air-, and sea-dwelling creatures come from separate fossil groups. The term “dinosaur” strictly refers to land-dwelling creatures. This means that pterodactyls and other flying creatures weren’t dinosaurs, nor were creatures that swam. Instead, the term “pterosaur” refers to the group of flying reptiles that existed during the Mesozoic Era. Plesiosauria inhabited the sea. 

They Lived in Jungles

Usually, when we imagine dinosaurs, we envision them walking through lush jungles. Although the Earth was warmer during the Mesozoic Era than it is now, these beasts lived in various ecosystems ranging from forests to deserts! Some even ruled the freezing Arctic.

They Were Drab in Color

Most of us assume dinosaurs were brown or maybe green. However, this belief is a myth. Scientists have discovered that some dinosaurs had iridescent feathers and others had striped features like those of zebras. These creatures were probably a lot more beautiful than what we assume!

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Written by Logan Voss

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