Finally, You Can See Dinosaurs in All Their Feathered Glory
A new exhibit in New York challenges the popular view of dinos as green, scaly beasts and showcases their links to today's birds.
At first glance, it may be hard to see how the ducks you feed, the pigeons you dodge, or the peacocks you admire have anything in common with the “terrible lizards” portrayed in iconic dinosaur movies such as Jurassic Park.
But many scientists now believe that modern birds are living dinosaurs. Specifically, a group of two-legged carnivorous dinosaurs called theropods seems to have evaded the great dino extinction event 65 million years ago by developing feathers, bigger and more adaptable brains, and smaller, more airborne forms.
“It’s important that people understand dinosaurs are still among us,” says Mark Norell, chair of paleontology at the American Museum of Natural History in New York. “They’re represented by at least 13,000 species alive today.”
Norell has curated the new exhibit Dinosaurs Among Us, which opened on March 18, that maps out the evolutionary history of birds while challenging the popular perception