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Fossil clues

Why is it difficult to interpret dinosaurs fossils?

(continued) Dino Dig. Copyright 1993 by Jeff Doten. All Rights Reserved. Used with permission.

Dinosaur fossils are not found with labels or photographs attached showing what the animals looked like. That is why no pictures of dinosaurs on this site or any others are exactly right. Every dinosaur painting is sure to contain at least some wrong information. No Twentieth Century artist ever saw the living, breathing animals--complete with skin, flesh, and color.

Dino Fossils.

For instance, imagine never having seen or heard of a poodle or a peacock. One day you find the jumbled bones of it buried in the ground. You try to put the bones together to form a skeleton. And then you try to draw a picture of what the animal looked like when alive. But bones cannot tell the whole story.

Even if you are a very good artist, it would be a miracle if you drew a true picture of a poodle or a peacock just from the bones and your imagination.

If scientists could climb into a time machine and travel to the past, they could get much better information. Only then would they know the true appearance of dinosaurs or what they ate and how they really behaved. Scientists might be very surprised what they would learn.

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