Birds evolved from dinosaurs, and some dinosaurs were warm-blooded. Mammals existed at the same time as dinosaurs, and most dinosaurs were vegetarian. Many dinosaurs had some form of intelligence as well.
Modern species of birds evolved from a common feathered ancestor, the theropod, starting around the end of the Jurassic and Cretaceous periods. Even though modern reptiles are cold-blooded, which means that their body temperature fluctuates with the surrounding climate, most carnivorous dinosaurs were more likely to be warm-blooded because of their predatory lifestyle, which is why birds are also warm-blooded. Meat-eating predators like the Tyrannosaurus rex and Giganotosaurus are rare compared to the amount of dinosaurs that had a vegetarian diet. Paleontologists speculate that herbivorous dinosaurs like the hadrosaurs, ornithopods and sauropods grazed on vegetation in herds like modern cattle graze in pastures.
The mammals that lived during the same time period as dinosaurs lived in treetops far away from predators during most of the Mesozoic Era. These mammals were small and furry and looked like mice. Other mammals, such as the 50-pound Repenomamus, hunted dinosaurs. Hunters such as T. rex and Troodon had more grey matter than herbivores like the stegosaurus. These predators had more thinking power than their prey and had a keen sense of coordination and heightened senses.Learn More
There is evidence that dinosaurs did not have a single, uniform and universal diet but rather a wide variety of dietary habits, with evidence supporting the idea that carnivorous, herbivorous and omnivorous species all existed. Different feeding styles were also likely, with some carnivorous species hunting prey such as mammals and small reptiles, while other carnivores may have been opportunistic carrion scavengers. There was likely even a good range of dietary variety amongst the herbivorous dinosaurs, which may have made up the majority of all dinosaur species.Full Answer >
Even though there was a popular theory that Stegosaurus may have had two brains, one in its head and one toward its tail or rear end, that idea has largely been discredited in paleontology. Some paleontologists may still hold on to this theory and try to find ways that it might be true, but on the whole, this is not an accepted idea.Full Answer >
Archaeopteryx is a fossil animal that became famous because it had a combination of reptilian and distinctly bird-like characteristics, which implied support for Darwin's theory of natural selection. Scientists initially hailed it as the first bird. Today, scientists classify all dinosaurs as birds, and some of Archaeopteryx's bird-like traits have been discovered in subsequent fossils of animals once considered entirely reptilian in appearance.Full Answer >
Pterodactyls lived in Europe, Australia, North America and Africa; many pterodactyl fossils have been found in the Bavarian region in Germany. During the Jurassic Period, when the pterodactyl lived, Bavaria was a wetland. When the animal died, it sank into the mud and was fossilized over the millennia.Full Answer >