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What Sounds Did Dinosaurs Make?

Clues in dinosaur skulls have lead scientists to believe that these animals did make noises.

  • Grades: 3–5, 6–8

Adapted from Dinosaurs: The Very Latest Information and Hands-On Activities From the Museum of the Rockies, by Liza Charlesworth and Bonnie Sachatello-Sawyer. A Scholastic Professional Book.

 

Paleontologists may never know for sure what kinds of sounds dinosaurs made, but most believe that these animals did make noises. Why? Clues in dinosaur skulls tell them so. Some, like "Lambeosaurus," had crests on top of their heads that probably filled with air when the animal breathed. As air was pushed through these crests, they likely made a deep bellowing sound similar to a horn.

Did dinosaurs communicate? Most paleontologists think so. Like modern-day birds and reptiles, dinosaurs probably made noises to signal that they were looking for a mate, that there was danger, or that they were hurt. Babies may have made sounds to let adults know they needed food or were in trouble.

While paleontologists have not found any evidence to suggest dinosaurs have external ears, the skulls and brain casts of certain dinosaurs indicate they had a good sense of hearing and the ability to hear both high- and low-frequency sounds. All of which mean their world could have been very noisy indeed!

Possible Dinosaur Sounds

  • Bellows
  • Honks
  • Moos
  • Squeaks
  • Roars
  • Snarls
  • Snorts
  • Grunts
  • Hisses
  • Rumbles
  • Hoots

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  • Subjects:
    Archaeology, Dinosaurs
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