List Of Animals That Lived With Dinosaurs: Information And Pictures (2023)

We all know who the real ‘stars’ of the Mesozoic Era were, but there were plenty of other incredible animals that lived at the same time as dinosaurs.

On thispage you’ll find a list of animals that lived with dinosaurs, withpictures and information about many different types of Mesozoic species.

We’ve tried to include not only animals you’ve probably already heard of, but also a selection of lesser-known creatures of the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods.

  • This page is part of our Dinosaur Facts series.

Active Wild would like to thank Rupert Harwood for his invaluable help in compiling this article.

You’llbecome a ‘Mesozoic animal expert’if you read the whole page, but if you want to jump to a particular sectionyou can use the links below:

  • Flying Animals That Lived With Dinosaurs
  • Sea Animals That Lived at the Same Time as Dinosaurs
  • Other Reptiles That Lived With Dinosaurs on Land
  • Early Crocodiles That Lived At The Same Time As Dinosaurs
  • Mammals That Lived At The Same Time As Dinosaurs
  • Other Animals That Lived With Dinosaurs
  • Birds That Lived at the Same Time as Dinosaurs

Animals That Lived At The Same Time As Dinosaurs: Introduction

Because we hear so much about dinosaurs, it’s easy to forget that manyother amazing animals lived in the Mesozoic Era.

Dinosaurs may have been the dominant animals on land, but in the sea and in the air it was a different story.

Swimming in the Mesozoic oceans were huge meat-eating reptiles such as Ichthyosaurs, Plesiosaurs and Mosasaurs, each of which were every bit as fearsome as their land-based cousins.

While dinosaurs were busy stomping around on the ground, huge flying reptiles called Pterosaurs were soaring above their heads. Although dinosaurs did eventually evolve into birds and‘learn to fly’ it was the Pterosaurs who ruled the Mesozoic skies.

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Even on land,dinosaursneeded to be carefulwhen walking near rivers and lakes. Early crocodile-like animals appeared long before the dinosaurs. By the end of the Mesozoic Era, they had evolved into animals that weren’t really all that different to the crocodiles that live today – although some were much, much bigger!

Throughout the Mesozoic Era, the air would have been filled with the constant buzz of insects. Insects began to appear on Earth around 400 million years ago, in the Devonian period. That’s over 150 million years before the first dinosaurs!

Other familiar animalsthat lived in the Mesozoic Erainclude mammals, fish (including sharks), turtles, snakes, amphibians, lizards and birds. Some of these arrived before the dinosaurs, others after, but all were at some point alive at the same time as dinosaurs.

We’ll find out about many of these further down the page, but first here’s a reminder of how long ago all of this happened …

When Did Dinosaurs Live?

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The Mesozoic Era began around 252 million years ago, and lasted for around 186 million years. This immense period of time is divided into the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods.

  • You can find out more about the periods of the Mesozoic Era here: Dinosaur Periods.

Dinosaurs began to appear between 243 and 231 million years ago, during the mid to late Triassic period. They became the dominant land animals in the Jurassic period, and their reign continued throughout the Cretaceous period.

A worldwide extinction event that occurred around 66 million years ago* finally brought the reign of the dinosaurs to an end.

* For many years it was thought that the Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event that wiped out the dinosaurs occurred around 65 million years ago. Subsequent studies by geologists have shifted the time back a million years.

(Video) 15 Most Terrifying Creatures That Lived Before Dinosaurs

  • You can find out more about the extinction of the dinosaurs here: Why did Dinosaurs Become Extinct?

Although the Mesozoic Era is best known as the ‘Age of the Dinosaurs’, they weren’t the only animals around during this time. Let’s meet some of the animals that lived alongside the dinosaurs …

List Of Animals That Lived At The Same Time As Dinosaurs

Flying Animals That Lived With Dinosaurs

Pterosaurs – the ‘Flying Dinosaurs’

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Despite often being called ‘flying dinosaurs’ Pterosaurs were NOT dinosaurs. Neither were they birds – or even ancestors of birds. They evolved quite independently to birds (which actually DID evolve from dinosaurs).

Pterosaurs appeared during the late Triassic period and existed right up to the end of the Cretaceous period. They had large, leathery wings, which were extended on specially-modified fourth fingers. Their other fingers formed claws which stuck out mid-way along their wings.

Dimorphodon

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Dimorphodon was a pterosaur that lived in the early Jurassic period. Like other early pterosaurs, it had a long bony tail that ended with a flattened ‘paddle’. Its jaws were full of needle-like teeth.

Pterodactylus

Pterodactylus was a late Jurassic pterosaur. It didn’t have a tail, and was relatively small.

Pterodactylus was the first pterosaur to be identified as being a flying reptile. Because of this, the word ‘Pterodactyl’ is sometimes used to describe all pterosaurs.

  • You can find out more about Pterodactylushere: PterodactylusFacts.

Quetzalcoatlus

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The Quetzalcoatlus, a late-cretaceous pterosaur, was the largest ever flying animal. Its wingspan may have reached 12 meters (39 ft.); that’s longer than 6 tall men lying head to toe!

Sea Animals That Lived With Dinosaurs

The ‘Swimming Dinosaurs’: Ichthyosaurs, Plesiosaurs And Mosasaurs

Throughout the Mesozoic Era, the world’s continents and oceans were continually changing shape and position.

In fact, at the beginning of the Mesozoic Era, there was only one huge continent, called Pangaea, and one ocean, called Panthalassa.

By the end of the Mesozoic Era, the continents were in roughly the positions that they are in today.

Throughout this time, various fearsome creatures fought for dominance of the seas.

Nothosaurs

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Nothosaurs were a group of aquatic reptiles that spent much of their time in the water, but were able to haul themselves onto land to rest. Ranging from less than a meter (3ft.) to over 4 meters (13ft.), Nothosaurs had webbed feet and long necks.

Ichthyosaurs

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Ichthyosaur means ‘fish lizard’. These large marine predators appeared in the early to mid Triassic period. They thrived throughout the late Triassic and early Jurassic periods.

(Video) Dinosaurs 101 | National Geographic

Ichthyosaurs looked similar to today’s dolphins, and evolved from land animals in much the same way as dolphins did millions of years later.

When unrelated species evolve the same characteristics independently of one another in this way, it’s known as ‘convergent evolution’.

Plesiosaurs

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Plesiosaurs were large marine reptiles with short tails and long necks (the necks of some plesiosaurs were over half the length of their entire bodies!). Plesiosaurs propelled themselves through the water with four large paddles using a ‘flying’ action.

Plesiosaurs appeared in the late Triassic period, and began to thrive during the Jurassic period, overtaking Ichthyosaurs as the dominant marine animals.

Pliosaurs

Pliosaurs were a group of large, short-necked Plesiosaurs. Pliosaurs such as Kronosaurus and Liopleurodon were some of the largest meat-eaters ever to have lived on Earth.

Mosasaurs

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In the Cretaceous period plesiosaurs began to decline, and it was the Mosasaurs that took their place. Mosasaurs were fearsome-looking marine predators. They had large heads and jaws full of sharp teeth.

Other Reptiles That Lived With Dinosaurs on Land

Dinosaurs didn’t have it all their own way! Both before and after the dinosaurs arrived, there were many other types of large predatory reptiles running around.

Proterosuchus

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One of the largest land reptiles of the Early Triassic was Proterosuchus, a large, crocodile-like predator. Remains of this ambush hunter have been found in South Africa and China.

Tanystropheus

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Tanystropheus was a 6 meter (20 ft.) long reptile that lived in the mid Triassic period. It was a strange-looking animal, whose neck was over twice its total body length. It probably hunted near water, plunging its long neck under the water to grab passing fish.

Archosaurs

Archosaurs were a group of reptiles that became the dominant land animals in the early Triassic period.

Euparkeria

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A member of this group was Euparkeria, a crocodile-like animal that inhabited mid Triassic lakes, rivers and swamps. It may have been able to walk upright on its two longer hind legs, but is thought to have developed this ability independently of the dinosaurs.

Pseudosuchia

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Archosaurs split into two main branches. One branch, the Avemetatarsalia, went on to become dinosaurs (and therefore birds) and alsoPterosaurs.

The other branch was the Pseudosuchia.They were the ancestors of today’s Crocodilians – the group of animals that includes crocodiles, alligators and gharials.

(Video) Top 10 Animals That Survived What Dinosaurs Couldn't

These early crocodile-like animals dominated the land throughout the Triassic period, even after dinosaurs had appeared.

A mass extinction at the end of the Triassic period allowed the dinosaurs to take over from the Pseudosuchians at the start of the Jurassic period.

By the late Cretaceous period the Pseudosuchians had evolved into the Crocodilians … and since then have changed very little.

An interesting fact that stems from all of this is that today, birds are the closest living relatives of the Crocodilians (and vice versa). Both of these groups are descended from Archosaurs! For example, a crow is more closely related to an alligator than a sea turtle!

Early Crocodiles That Lived At The Same Time As Dinosaurs

Postosuchus

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Postosuchus was a Pseudosuchian that lived in the late Triassic period. It was one of the largest meat-eating reptiles of its day, and likely the apex predator in the North American region in which it lived.

Postosuchus grew to around 1.2 m (3.9 ft.) in height, and 4 m (13 ft.) in length. It had a huge skull, jaws filled with sharp teeth, and thick, armored skin.

Sarcosuchus

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Sarcosuchus, whose name means ‘flesh crocodile’, was one of the largest crocodilians ever to have lived. It grew to around 12 m (39 ft) in length and weighed up to 8 tonnes (8.8 short tons).

Deinosuchus

Deinosuchus, whose name means ‘terrible crocodile’ was a large Crocodilian that lived in North America in the Late Cretaceous period. Although much bigger than modern day crocodilians, it was very similar in all other regards.

Turtles And Snakes

The crocodilians aren’t the only familiar reptiles that made it past the Cretaceous-Paleogene Extinction Event. The first lizards appeared in the Triassic period, and turtles and snakes appeared in the Cretaceous period; all are still around today.

Mammals That Lived At The Same Time As Dinosaurs

At some point In the Permian period, a new branch of reptile-like animals emerged. They were the Synapsids. Although many of these looked like lizards or small dinosaurs, one branch, called the Therapsids, would eventually evolve into mammals.

Therapsids were actually the dominant land animals in the Permian period, but in the Triassic the early Archosaurs took over. The mammals would have to wait their turn!

Let’s meet some notable mammals that were alive with the dinosaurs …

Thrinaxodon

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Cynodonts were a group of Therapsids that were even more mammal-like than their predecessors. Thrinaxodon was a dog-sized cynodont that lived in South Africa in the Triassic period.

Although Thrinaxodon was still very reptilian, definite mammalian characteristics were beginning to emerge. It had specialised biting, chewing and cutting teeth, and may have had whiskers and fur – suggesting that it was warm-blooded.

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Megazostrodon

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Megazostrodon is considered by many to be one of the first mammals. It was a small, rat-like animal that appeared in the early Jurassic period. Although covered in fur, it still had a scaly tail. Megazostrodon had a larger brain that earlier Cynodonts, and was possibly nocturnal. Mothers may have produced milk for their young.

Didelphodon

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Didelphodon was a cat-sized mammal that lived in North America during the Late Cretaceous period. It was a short but powerfully-built animal, likely to have been an aquatic predator.

Didelphodon didn’t make it past the Cretaceous-Paleogene Extinction Event, but luckily for us, some mammals did!

Other Animals That Lived With Dinosaurs

As we found at the beginning of this page, insects had been on Earth for millions of years before the dinosaurs. Huge dragonflies were buzzing back and forth through the air and beetles were scurrying across the ground long before the Mesozoic Era.

Flies appeared in the Triassic period, and more insects appeared as flowering plants evolved in the Jurassic period. The first moths and wasps appeared towards the end of the Jurassic period.

Amphibians, like insects, had been around since the Devonian period. Amphibians evolved from fish, and reptiles evolved from amphibians. Amphibians, therefore, represent the origin of all of the large land and water animals.

Beelzebufo ampinga

Beelzebufo ampinga, otherwise known as the ‘Devil Frog’ was a frog that lived in Madagascar in the Late Cretaceous period. It grew to over 40 cm (16 in.) in length, making it significantly larger than any living frog.

Birds That Lived at the Same Time as Dinosaurs

Birds evolved from a branch of dinosaurs called theropods, which also included well-known predators such as T Rex and Spinosaurus.

Archaeopteryx

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Archaeopteryx was one of the earliest birds. It lived in what is now Europe in the Late Jurassic period. Although it still had reptilian characteristics such as teeth and a long, bony tail, it had feathers which were formed much like those of a modern bird.

Scientists are divided on whether Archaeopteryx was capable of full ‘flapping flight’ like a modern-day bird, or if it relied on gliding, with wing flaps to extend the time it was able to spend in the air.

  • Read more about Archaeopteryx here: Archaeopteryx Facts

Iberomesornis

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By the Early Cretaceous, the early birds were becoming even more bird-like, and less reptilian. Iberomesornis was a sparrow-sized animal that was fully-feathered and capable of flapping flight. From a distance it would have looked like a small, modern day songbird. Closer examination would have revealed that it still had claws on its wings and (probably) a beak full of teeth.

Animals That Lived With Dinosaurs: Conclusion

We hope that this page has given you some idea of the many different types of animal that lived alongside the dinosaurs.

Making a full list of animals that lived with dinosaurs is an impossible task: dinosaurs were present on Earth for millions of years, and during this vast period of time countless animals both appeared and became extinct.

Although dinosaurs are the most famous of the animals that were alive during the Mesozoic Era, there was a multitude of other types of animals living at the same time.

While some of these, such as the pterosaurs and plesiosaurs, were ‘dinosaur-like’ in appearance, others looked more likeanimals that are still around today. We hope that you’ve enjoyed meeting some of the non-dinosaur animals of the Mesozoic era!

(Video) 10 Biggest Sea Dinosaurs That Ever Existed on Earth

Now that you know all about the animals that lived at the same time as dinosaurs, check out some other dinosaur pages:

  • Become a dinosaur expert: read our main Dinosaur Facts page!
  • Discover some amazing dinos here: List of Dinosaurs
  • Want to learn about more prehistoric animals? Visit:List Of Prehistoric Animals That Are Not Dinosaurs

FAQs

Are there any animals still alive that lived with dinosaurs? ›

Some still exist, like the duck-billed platypus and spiny anteaters or echidnas. And insects like the stubborn cockroach were alive before the dinosaurs. So yes, there are land, air and sea animals alive right now that also lived a long, long time ago.

What are 5 animals that lived in the Jurassic period? ›

At the top of the food chain were the long-necked and paddle-finned plesiosaurs, giant marine crocodiles, sharks, and rays. Fishlike ichthyosaurs, squidlike cephalopods, and coil-shelled ammonites were abundant. Coral reefs grew in the warm waters, and sponges, snails, and mollusks flourished.

What kind of mammals lived with dinosaurs? ›

The earliest known mammals were the morganucodontids, tiny shrew-size creatures that lived in the shadows of the dinosaurs 210 million years ago. They were one of several different mammal lineages that emerged around that time.

What animal is family with dinosaurs? ›

In fact, birds are commonly thought to be the only animals around today that are direct descendants of dinosaurs. So next time you visit a farm, take a moment to think about it. All those squawking chickens are actually the closest living relatives of the most incredible predator the world has ever known!

What fish was alive with dinosaurs? ›

June 18 (Reuters) - The coelacanth - a wondrous fish that was thought to have gone extinct along with the dinosaurs 66 million years ago before unexpectedly being found alive and well in 1938 off South Africa's east coast - is offering up even more surprises.

Is crocodile a dinosaur? ›

Crocodiles are not dinosaurs, but both crocodiles and dinosaurs came from the crown group Archosaurs. Archosaurs were reptiles that included birds, crocodiles, pterosaurs, and dinosaurs. Modern-day birds are descendants of feathered dinosaurs, evolving over the last 65 million years.

What was the last living dinosaur? ›

Today's birds are the last of the dinosaurs, descendents of ancestors that didn't just survive this mass extinction, but evolutionarily exploded into thousands of species distributed around the world.

What was the last living dinosaur on Earth? ›

For now, however, the 65-million-year-old Triceratops is the world's last known surviving dinosaur.

What are 3 interesting facts about the Jurassic period? ›

Top Jurassic Period Facts

Rocks in this region were formed during the Jurassic Period. The Jurassic Period began 201.3 million years ago (Mya) and ended 145 Mya. It lasted 56 million years, and was the second-longest period of the Mesozoic Era. The Jurassic is the second of the three periods of the Mesozoic Era.

What were the main animals in the Jurassic period? ›

Although dinosaurs are undoubtedly the best-known Jurassic animals, they weren't the only animals alive at the time. On this page you'll find a selection of Jurassic animals that weren't dinosaurs, including ichthyosaurs, plesiosaurs, pterosaurs and many other vertebrates and invertebrates.

What is the largest animal in the Jurassic period? ›

Jurassic Period: Life

The largest dinosaurs of the time -- in fact, the largest land animals of all time -- were the gigantic sauropods, such as the famous Diplodocus (pictured at lower left), Brachiosaurus and Apatosaurus.

Did crabs live with dinosaurs? ›

But true crabs are a dinosaur-era phenomenon, as they arrived on the scene between 200 and 150 million years ago.

What was the first dinosaur? ›

The earliest dinosaurs for which we do have well-documented fossils are found in Late Triassic Ischigualasto Formation in northern Argentina. Skeletons discovered in these rock layers include the meat-eating dinosaurs Herrerasaurus and Eoraptor, as well as the plant-eating dinosaur Pisanosaurus.

Did monkeys live with dinosaurs? ›

Based on the age of the fossils, the research team estimates that the ancestor of all primates — a group that also includes today's lemurs and monkeys — likely emerged by the Late Cretaceous and lived alongside large dinosaurs.

What animal is a dinosaur 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.

Is a turtle a dinosaur? ›

Sea turtles are living dinosaurs, having survived some 90 million years from the Age of the Reptiles.

What dinosaur was a shark? ›

Cladoselache is regarded as the first "true shark". It lived 380 million years ago and it still retained a few characteristics of its fishy ancestors. It had a fish-like head, seven gills instead of five like most sharks, and its body was longer and less muscular than the sharks we see today.

What dinosaur ate sharks? ›

Spinosaurus, the Biggest Meat-Eating Dino Ever Discovered, Ate Entire Sharks. In the desert sands of Morocco, scientists found fossils of a colossal Mesozoic killing machine that patrolled ancient river systems and devoured huge prey.

Which dinosaur can live in water? ›

Spinosaurus is the only dinosaur we know that spent time living in the water. Another dinosaur, Ceratosaurus, could probably swim and catch aquatic prey, such as fish and crocodiles.

Is chicken a dinosaur? ›

So, are chickens dinosaurs? No – the birds are a distinct group of animals, but they did descend from the dinosaurs, and it's not too much of a twist of facts to call them modern dinosaurs. There are many similarities between the two types of animal, largely to do with bone structure.

Is a bird a dinosaur? ›

Birds belong to the theropod group of dinosaurs that included T. rex. Theropods are all bipedal and some of them share more bird-like features than others. Archaeopteryx, discovered in 1861, was for a long time the only truly bird-like dinosaur – it's from the Late Jurassic era (150 million years ago).

Is a rhino a dinosaur? ›

Rhinos are not related to dinosaurs, even remotely. The biggest difference is that rhinos are mammals and dinosaurs are considered reptiles.

What dinosaur has 5000 teeth? ›

Nigersaurus
Nigersaurus Temporal range: Aptian – Albian
Reconstructed skeleton in Japan
Scientific classification
Kingdom:Animalia
Phylum:Chordata
11 more rows

What killed the dinosaurs? ›

Scientists already know that an asteroid—or perhaps a comet—struck Earth off Mexico's Yucatán Peninsula. The resulting 110 miles/80 kilometers wide Chicxulub crater is thought to have caused a decades-long “impact winter” that killed the dinosaurs.

When was the first dinosaur alive? ›

First Dinosaurs. Approximately 230 million years ago, during the Triassic Period, the dinosaurs appeared, evolved from the reptiles. Plateosaurus was one of the first large plant-eating dinosaurs, a relative of the much larger sauropods.

When was the last dinosaur killed? ›

Dinosaurs went extinct about 65 million years ago (at the end of the Cretaceous Period), after living on Earth for about 165 million years.

What is the closest bird to a dinosaur? ›

While all birds are descended from dinosaurs, the mysterious cassowary is thought to be more similar to ancient dinosaurs than most other birds. Large bodied with fierce claws, these flightless birds also have casques, a helmet-like structure atop the head, which many dinosaurs are believed to have had.

What did Earth look like when dinosaurs lived? ›

The climate was relatively hot and dry, and much of the land was covered with large deserts. Unlike today, there were no polar ice caps. It was in this environment that the reptiles known as dinosaurs first evolved.

How hot did dinosaurs live? ›

"Our results demonstrate that dinosaurs in the northern hemisphere lived in extreme heat, when average summer temperatures hovered around 27 degrees. As such, one can well imagine that there were summer days when temperatures crept above 40 degrees. However, winters were mild and wet," says Nicolas Thibault.

What trees were around with the dinosaurs? ›

The dinosaurs lived among and munched mostly on flowering evergreen trees, such as ferns, cycads, gingkoes, and beeches, all of which keep their foliage year-round. According to the fossil record, these sorts of trees and shrubs thrived during the time of the dinosaurs.

What killed the Jurassic period? ›

Extraterrestrial impact

Some have hypothesized that an impact from an asteroid or comet may have caused the Triassic–Jurassic extinction, similar to the extraterrestrial object which was the main factor in the Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction about 66 million years ago, as evidenced by the Chicxulub crater in Mexico.

What animals and plants lived in the Jurassic period? ›

On land, dinosaurs and flying pterosaurs dominated the ecosystems, and birds made their first appearance. Early mammals also were present, though they were still fairly insignificant. Insect populations were diverse, and plants were dominated by the gymnosperms, or “naked-seed” plants.

When did the T. rex live? ›

T. rex lived at the very end of the Late Cretaceous, which was about 90 to 66 million years ago.

Which is the largest dino? ›

By these measures, Argentinosaurus was the largest dinosaur, as well as the largest land animal, ever known.

Which is bigger elephant or T. rex? ›

of one very big extinct animal, Tyrannosaurus rex. The most famous of the upright, largely meat-eating dinosaurs called theropods, T. rex would have weighed between 5,000 and 7,000 kilograms (11,000 to 15,500 pounds) with skin and flesh on its huge bones. That's about as much as the largest African elephant.

What animal is bigger than dinosaur? ›

Far bigger than any dinosaur, the blue whale is the largest known animal to have ever lived. An adult blue whale can grow to a massive 30m long and weigh more than 180,000kg - that's about the same as 40 elephants, 30 Tyrannosaurus Rex or 2,670 average-sized men.

Did jellyfish live with dinosaurs? ›

5. Jellyfish predate dinosaurs by hundreds of millions of years. Jellyfish don't have bones, so fossils are hard to come by. Even so, scientists have uncovered evidence these creatures have been living in our Ocean for at least 500 million years!

Did snails live with dinosaurs? ›

As reported in the 2009 study, paleontologists digging at a 76-million-year-old site within the well-known Two Medicine Formation have found more than 130 snail specimens closely associated with—and sometimes even within—the fossilized feces of herbivorous dinosaurs.

What animal is closest to a dinosaur? ›

Crocodilians are the most closely related group. They evolved before dinosaurs and experts put crocodiles in the larger family group, archosaurs. Strictly speaking, birds are the only direct descendants of the giant, extinct dinosaurs, and crocodiles and alligators are close relatives.

What killed the first dinosaur? ›

Sixty-six million years ago, dinosaurs had the ultimate bad day. With a devastating asteroid impact, a reign that had lasted 180 million years was abruptly ended. Prof Paul Barrett, a dinosaur researcher at the Museum, explains what is thought to have happened the day the dinosaurs died.

What was the smallest dinosaur? ›

The amber-encased fossil was touted as the smallest fossil dinosaur ever found. Known from little more than a peculiar skull, and described early in 2020, Oculudentavis khaungraae was presented as a hummingbird-sized toothed bird—an avian dinosaur that fluttered around prehistoric Myanmar about 100 million years ago.

Who found dinosaurs? ›

In 1677, Robert Plot is credited with discovering the first dinosaur bone, but his best guess as to what it belonged to was a giant human. It wasn't until William Buckland, the first professor of geology at Oxford University, that a dinosaur fossil was correctly identified for what it was.

Did snakes live with the dinosaurs? ›

Their results show that all living snakes trace back to just a handful of species that survived the asteroid impact 66 million years ago, the same extinction that wiped out the dinosaurs.

Did blue whales live with dinosaurs? ›

No, blue whales were not around during the time of the dinosaurs. When dinosaurs lived, mammals were predominantly terrestrial organisms and rather small. The first whales did not evolve until around 50 million years ago, roughly 15 million years after the extinction of dinosaurs.

What was the first animal on Earth? ›

The First Animals

Sponges were among the earliest animals. While chemical compounds from sponges are preserved in rocks as old as 700 million years, molecular evidence points to sponges developing even earlier.

Did any mammals exist with dinosaurs? ›

Mammals first appeared at least 170 million years ago and lived among dinosaurs until a mass extinction event following a catastrophic asteroid impact killed off all dinosaurs except birds.

What living animals are most closely related to dinosaurs? ›

Crocodilians are the most closely related group. They evolved before dinosaurs and experts put crocodiles in the larger family group, archosaurs. Strictly speaking, birds are the only direct descendants of the giant, extinct dinosaurs, and crocodiles and alligators are close relatives.

Did bees exist with dinosaurs? ›

The oldest fossil bees date from about 100 million years ago, which means bees and dinosaurs lived together for at least 35 million years, and possibly much longer.

Did apes live with dinosaurs? ›

Based on the age of the fossils, the research team estimates that the ancestor of all primates — a group that also includes today's lemurs and monkeys — likely emerged by the Late Cretaceous and lived alongside large dinosaurs.

Did sharks exist with dinosaurs? ›

In fact, sharks and their relatives were the first vertebrate predators on Earth. Shark fossils date back more than 400 million years – that means sharks managed to outlive the dinosaurs, survive mass extinctions, and continue to serve an important role near the top of underwater food chains.

What was the last dinosaur to live? ›

Today's birds are the last of the dinosaurs, descendents of ancestors that didn't just survive this mass extinction, but evolutionarily exploded into thousands of species distributed around the world.

What dinosaurs exist 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.

What was on Earth before dinosaurs? ›

Plant life consisted mostly of ferns, conifers and small shrubs. Animals included sharks, bony fish, arthropods, amphibians, reptiles and synapsids. The first true mammals would not appear until the next geological period, the Triassic.

Do dinosaurs Still Exist? ›

These relatives of Tyrannosaurus and Velociraptor can be found thriving all over the planet: We call them birds. From AMNH: In the view of most paleontologists today, birds are living dinosaurs.

When was the first human born? ›

Overview. Homo sapiens, the first modern humans, evolved from their early hominid predecessors between 200,000 and 300,000 years ago. They developed a capacity for language about 50,000 years ago. The first modern humans began moving outside of Africa starting about 70,000-100,000 years ago.

Who came first monkey or dinosaur? ›

Conventional wisdom holds that primates arose no earlier than 65 million years ago (after the demise of the dinosaurs), a date based on the oldest accepted fossil representatives of the group, which hail from roughly 55 million years ago, plus a few million years thrown in for good measure.

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