Dinosaur is the name of large extinct reptiles of the Mesozoic Era,
during which they were the dominant land animals on Earth. The term was
proposed as a formal zoologic name in 1842 by the British anatomist Sir Richard
Owen, in reference to large fossil bones unearthed in southern England. The
various kinds of dinosaurs are classified in two formal categories, the orders
Saurischia and Ornithischia, within the subclass Archosauria.

The first recorded dinosaur remains found consisted of a few teeth and
bones. They were discovered in 1882 in Sussex, England, by an English doctor,
Gideon Mantell, who named them iguanodon. About the same time, other fossil
teeth and bones were found ...

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dinosaurs were large,
weighing more than 1,100 lb., and few weighed less than 100 lb. Most were
herbivores, but some saurischians were carnivorous. The majority were four-
footed but some ornithischians and all carnivores walked on their hind legs.

Always classified as reptiles, dinosaurs have traditionally been assumed
to have been reptilian in their physiology, cold-blooded, and ectothermic. In
recent years several different lines of evidence have been interpreted as
indicating that dinosaurs may have had warm blood and high rates of metabolism,
comparable to birds and mammals. Evidence supporting this view includes upright
posture and carriage; mammallike microscopical structure of bones; skeletal
features suggestive of high activity; and specialized food-processing dentitions
and low ratios of dinosaurian predators to prey animals, both suggesting high
food requirements. The evidence is not conclusive--all the facts can be
alternatively explained--but some dinosaurs may ...

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Dinosaurs. (2006, December 19). Retrieved June 7, 2020, from http://www.essayworld.com/essays/Dinosaurs/57378
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Added: 12/19/2006 09:58:39 PM
Category: Science & Nature
Type: Free Paper
Words: 714
Pages: 3

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