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Dinosaur Discoveries

The 21st century is shaping up as a great time to be a paleontologist. Excavations by Museum scientists in northern China have uncovered an “animal Pompeii” of exquisitely preserved specimens. A 28-inch-long fossil of a baby Sciurumimus discovered in Germany suggests that all predatory dinosaurs might have had feathers. The oldest evidence of dinosaurs ever found—fossilized tracks from an animal smaller than a house cat—has been uncovered in Poland. New research is shedding light on how fast the non-avian dinosaurs went extinct, dino eggshells and ancient climate, and the evolution of bird-like brains in dinosaurs well before they took to the air as birds.

Google Field Trip: Paleo Prep Lab

Google Field Trip: Dinosaur Fossils at AMNH

Curator Mark Norell leads a tour of the Paleo Prep Lab.

how do you know where to look for dinos pinboard image

How do we know where to look for dinosaur fossils?

Dinosaur fossils are found almost exclusively in sedimentary rocks.

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Inside the Collections: Paleontology and the Big Bone Room

A look at the collection of oversize dinosaur fossils.

Microraptor Reconstruction

New Finding: Dinosaur’s Feathers Were Black with Iridescent Sheen

A pigeon-sized, four-winged dinosaur known as Microraptor had black iridescent feathers when it roamed the Earth 130 million years ago, according to 2012 research led by a team of American and Chinese scientists that includes Museum researchers.

Hall of Saurischian Dinosaurs

Hall of Saurischian Dinosaurs

This hall features the imposing mounts of Tyrannosaurus rex and Apatosaurus.

Triceratops hero

Dinosaurs Fell Victim to “Perfect Storm” of Events, Study Infers

Dinosaurs might have survived the asteroid strike that wiped them out if it had taken place slightly earlier or later in time, according to research published in July 2014.


How Dinosaur Brains Led to Modern Birds

Museum researcher Amy Balanoff studies how the surprisingly advanced brains of dinosaurs developed into those of their modern relatives, birds.

Dinosaur Disparity Press Image

Were Dinosaurs Undergoing Long-Term Decline Before Mass Extinction?

Were dinosaurs already undergoing a long-term decline before an asteroid hit at the end of the Cretaceous about 65.5 million years ago? A recent study led by Museum scientists gives a multifaceted answer.

Shaena Montanari

Graduate Student Links Dino Eggshells and Ancient Climates

Richard Gilder Graduate School (RGGS) doctoral student Shaena Montanari uses her geology training and subtle clues left by dinosaurs to reconstruct the environment of Mongolia’s Gobi Desert as it was 70 million years ago.

Archaeopteryx Was Not Very Bird-like Archaeopteryx Lacked Rapid Bone Growth, The Hallmark Of Birds

Archaeopteryx Lacked Rapid Bone Growth, the Hallmark of Birds

First found in Germany in the 1860's and dating to 150 million years ago, Archaeopteryx has long been considered the iconic first bird. But microscopic imaging of bone structure published in PLoS One shows that this famously feathered fossil grew much slower than living birds and more like non-avian dinosaurs.


Strange Predatory Dinosaur From Europe's Late Cretaceous Described by Romanian and U.S. Paleontologists

This Velociraptor relative had stocky limbs and two claws on its feet. 


Going Gobi

Who would travel halfway around the world to spend the summer in a desert where brutal sandstorms and surprise flash floods are on the itinerary? Meet Mike and Mark, who've made the trek annually since 1990. 


Are Any Dinosaurs Still Alive Today?

In an evolutionary sense, birds are a living group of dinosaurs because they descended from the common ancestor of all dinosaurs. Other than birds, however, there is no scientific evidence that any dinosaurs, such as Tyrannosaurus, Velociraptor, Apatosaurus, Stegosaurus, or Triceratops, are still alive.


Google Glass in the Gobi: Road Trip

Aki Watanabe, a student in the comparative biology doctoral program at the Museum's Richard Gilder Graduate School, was recently chosen as a beta-tester for Google Glass. In this video, Watanabe shows the sights of the Gobi Desert as he heads to one of the Museum's paleontological field sites.

Meng Jin George Harlow Jehol fossils paper 2.14

Researchers Describe ‘Animal Pompeii’ in China

Mixed graveyards filled with exceptionally well-preserved dinosaurs, mammals, early birds, fish, and reptiles in northern China are the result of lethal volcanic flows, according to new work by an international team of geologists and paleontologists.


Division of Paleontology

The Division of Paleontology seeks to describe the diversity of extinct invertebrates and vertebrates and explore the mechanisms driving their evolution and extinction


Dinosaur Mummy

The Museum’s dinosaur mummy is a fossilized imprint of the carcass of a duck-billed dinosaur. One of the most complete pieces of Mesozoic dinosaur remains ever found, this fossil represents one of the greatest discoveries in the history of paleontology.

Newly Discovered Dinosaur Implies Greater Prevalence of Feathers

Newly Discovered Dinosaur Implies Greater Prevalence of Feathers

A new species of feathered dinosaur discovered in southern Germany is further changing the perception of how predatory dinosaurs looked. The fossil of Sciurumimus albersdoerferi, which lived about 150 million years ago, provides the first evidence of feathered theropod dinosaurs that are not closely related to birds.

Explore the Family Tree of Birds

Explore the Family Tree of Birds

Developed for the Seminars on Science online course The Link Between Dinosaurs and Birds, Dr. Mark Norell investigates the family tree of birds, focusing on early species like Archaeopteryx and Apsaravis.


What Was Dinosaur Skin Like?

Reptile skin is a complex system of scales separated by flexible joints, which are identical to scales, except thinner. In birds, the only living group of dinosaurs, the scales are modified into feathers, except around the feet and beak. 

Hall of Ornithischian Dinosaurs

Hall of Ornithischian Dinosaurs

One of two halls in the David H. Koch Dinosaur Wing, the Hall of Ornithischian Dinosaurs features fossils from one of the two major groups of dinosaurs.

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