Q:

Were there any dinosaurs that swam?

A:

Quick Answer

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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Full Answer

Inherent in the definition of dinosaur is its status as a terrestrial animal. Like other land animals, some dinosaurs, like the baryonyx, may have been able to swim if they found themselves in water, but there is no conclusive scientific evidence to support this. Even massive, long-necked dinosaurs such as apatosaurus, once thought to have spent its entire life submerged in deep water, are, as of 2014, believed to have been terrestrial forest dwellers.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    How long ago did dinosaurs live?

    A:

    Dinosaurs existed during the Mesozoic Era, first appearing around 230 million years ago and dying out about 65 million years ago. However, scientists largely agree that birds are the direct descendants of dinosaurs. If so, then the dinosaurs did not die off completely, only the non-avian variety did.

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  • Q:

    Were dinosaurs mammals?

    A:

    Though there were some dinosaurs with mammal-like qualities, dinosaurs were actually reptiles; however, though the word "dinosaur" roughly translates to "terrible lizard" in Greek, dinosaurs were not actually lizards, either. Dinosaurs represent a distinct group of reptiles that is now extinct, though there may be some living animals, including some birds, that are distant evolutionary relatives of the dinosaurs. The animals described as being mammal-like dinosaurs were actually early relatives of the dinosaur, and they were the dominant land animal about 260 million years ago, as opposed to the dinosaur, which was the dominant land animal about 231 million years ago.

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  • Q:

    Where did dinosaurs live?

    A:

    Scientists believe that the earth looked much different during the dinosaur's lifetime than it does today; at the advent of dinosaur life, all of the landmass on earth made up one single super continent known as Pangea. Dinosaurs likely did not live on every part of Pangea, instead concentrating in certain areas, including the land that is now known as Argentina, which is the home of the oldest known dinosaur fossil. Certain dinosaur species may have been localized to certain parts of the world, including the T.Rex, which has only been discovered in fossils found in North America.

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  • Q:

    Are there animals alive today that lived beside dinosaurs?

    A:

    There are some animals on earth that can be traced back to the Mesozoic Era when dinosaurs walked the earth; these animals include monotremes such as the duckbill platypus, reptiles such as the crocodilians and sea creatures such as the sea urchin. For the most part, the animals that are alive today have made evolutionary changes from the forms they had when dinosaurs were alive. For example, though the event that caused dinosaurs to die out also killed many other reptile species, several surviving reptile species have direct ancestors from that era, including the crocodilians, which are smaller than their Mesozoic ancestors.

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