I have been passionate about dinosaurs for as long as I can remember. Growing up, I loved natural history museums and could spend hours in dinosaur exhibits. If there was a play excavation dig, you can bet I was there. It amazes me that these giant (and small) creatures ruled the earth for around 170 million years. That’s a long time! The study of fossils is so important because it tells us information about different creatures and plants, most of which no longer exist in living forms. The fossils of these extinct animals give us a view into the earth’s past. In fact, there has been research that shows chickens are the closest related living relatives of feathered dinosaurs. If that’s not cool, I don’t know what is!
Have you ever heard of Sue? She is the best preserved, most complete Tyrannosaurus Rex ever found. Sue is named after paleontologist Sue Hendrickson, who discovered the fossil in 1990, and is currently on display at the Field Museum in Chicago. One of the most famous dinosaur specimens, her wonderful smile is made up of 58 huge teeth! I was lucky enough to go to the Field Museum this past summer to see her, and let me tell you, it was amazing. When you walk into the museum, the first thing you see is this enormous, majestic fossil, and the only thing I could think was that if she were alive, she would definitely try to eat me.
Dinosaurs are awesome and there are so many ways to learn about them, you can go to museums and libraries and share your interests with others. Personally, my favorite dinosaur is the Triceratops, whose name means “three-horned face.” The Triceratops was huge, often growing to 8 meters or longer! They had beaks and were also herbivores, which basically means they were vegetarian. What’s your favorite dinosaur? The author Steve Miller once said, “dinosaurs may be extinct from the face of the planet, but they are alive and well in our imaginations.”
Addy Kirtley is currently enrolled in the Honors College at the University of Akron in Ohio. She is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Anthropology as well as undergraduate certificates in both Archaeology and Museum Studies & Archives. She has lived in Brussels, Belgium and is a major history buff. She has a dog named Weston and a dog nephew named Roman, they are best friends. Her dreams are to one day become a natural history museum curator of the Smithsonian. Follow Addy on Instagram @addykirt and Twitter at @noglutenthough or contact her by email at email@example.com.
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