Dancing dinosaurs
January 12, 2016

Can you imagine a giant T Rex strutting its stuff to attract a mate? Well, scientists in America have discovered some spectacular scrape marks in the sandstone rocks of Colorado which would suggest that giant meat-eating dinos were partial to a bit of a boogie.

As with all such discoveries there are many potential explanations – such as nest building or digging for water – but the sheer number of marks found in one area, and the way they are made up of parallel double gouges in the ground, has led the scientists who made the discoveries to think they are signs of mating activity.

Dinosaur scrape marks photograph Martin Lockley

The scrapes are very similar to those made by ground nesting birds, such as Atlantic puffin and some parrots. They have very energetic courtship displays which includes prancing around and scratching the ground.  As you’ll know if you’ve borrowed our Touch to See book Dinosaurs ROAR! Jurassic Planet, birds are direct descendants of dinosaurs so it makes sense that they should share a common way of attracting the opposite sex.  No evidence has yet been found that they had the aid of a giant glitter ball!

For lots more interesting facts about the lives and habits of dinosaurs, borrow our two Dinosaurs ROAR! books for children aged 11-14 years from our online library.

Photo credit: Martin Lockley


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