|Dinosaurs, resembling huge lizards – crawling, swimming, and flying - inhabited our planet some 100-150 million years ago. Among them were small reptiles and lizards, many times surpassed elephants in size, and also harmless herbivorous existed and terrible predators. Several predating animals moved on two paws, while others, the stegosaurs and horned dinosaurs preferred to move on four paws. Several types of these monstrous animals got along with each other on the earth. In swamps, in the dense grass lived the stegosaurs, huge, clumsy animals weighing more than five tons. They had small flat heads, bent spines decorated with powerful shield plates and sharp bone projections were located on the tail. It is surprising that this seemingly monstrous animal did not eat meat or blood but was just herbivorous.
The brontosaurus and diplodocus were also herbivorous; they preferred living in lakes and bays rich with plant food. The length of the brontosaurus from head to tail was 18m, but the diplodocus was lengthier – more than 25m. The tyrannosaurus, a predating lizard with a horrible 1m wide mouth and huge dagger like teeth, was measured at a length of up to 14m. This was the largest predator among all who once inhabited the earth.
British paleontologist Richard Owen, who was the first to reconstruct the external picture of one of the giant lizards of the Mesozoic Period, named it as the dinosaur “the monstrous and horrible lizard”.
In the fossils of the ancient lake in the Jurassic Period (140 million years before), remains were found of flying lizards, ramforynchs covered with dense hair. The hair was preserved so well that scientists could measure the length, it was equal to 4-7mm. This discovery confirmed the assumption that flying lizards-pterosaurs were warm blooded animals.
A hundred millions years ago lizards were perfectly comfortable on the earth. In the world’s wildlife, they had no dangerous enemies. The reliable horned armor, unmerciful jaws and giant sizes of these animals speak for themselves. |