Q:

Why did the dinosaurs become extinct?

A:

There is not sufficient proof as to why dinosaurs went extinct, but experts believe it is related to geological events, diseases, climate change and lack of plant life for sustenance. The last known dinosaurs, according to their fossils, existed about 65 million years ago.

Over the years, there have been many theories and speculations about why dinosaurs went extinct. As more fossils are attained and technology allows science to advance further, palaeontologists have new theories. A persistent theory is that the sunlight was blocked by a large meteorite that crashed into the Earth. Without the sun, plants were unable to grow, and plant-eating dinosaurs would have died without a proper food source. Without herbivore dinosaurs, the carnivore dinosaurs also lose their food source.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    When did dinosaurs become extinct?

    A:

    Dinosaurs became extinct about 65 million years ago. This extinction event occurred between the Cretaceous and Tertiary periods and wiped out about 50 percent of all other organisms then living on the planet.

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  • Q:

    Is it possible to clone dinosaurs?

    A:

    It is very unlikely that a dinosaur can be cloned. The essential element, a complete dinosaur genome, is extremely unlikely to exist after 65 million years. Genetic material is made out of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA), and it breaks down over time.

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  • Q:

    Were there any dinosaurs that swam?

    A:

    True dinosaurs were not swimmers. There were a number of very large aquatic reptiles that lived during the age of the dinosaur, but they were not technically dinosaurs. These creatures belonged to one of several other groups, such as ichthyosaurs, plesiosaurs and mosasaurs, which were types of marine reptiles.

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  • Q:

    When did dinosaurs first appear?

    A:

    The first true dinosaurs first appeared about 230 million years ago. The first dinosaur fossils are distinguished from those of their reptile ancestors by their more upright stance, with legs directly beneath the body instead of splayed to the side, as with other reptiles. The earliest dinosaur fossils were found in South America, although a December 2012 fossil discovery in southern Africa casts some doubt on a South American origin.

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