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What exactly IS a dinosaur?



Brandon Pilcher writes:
 > I am currently working on a Powerpoint for a high school project
 > due around the beginning of June. The subject of my presentation
 > will be dinosaurs; it will be a general FAQ on dinosaurs and
 > various debates about them (for example, warm-bloodedness, theropod
 > foraging behavior, relationship to birds, etc.). The first question
 > that I will answer in my presentation will be, "What is a
 > dinosaur?" The problem is, I'm not 100% sure how to answer that
 > question. What distinguishes dinosaurs from, say, pterosaurs,
 > plesiosaurs, or saber-toothed cats? What are some characteristics
 > shared universally among dinosaurs that other animals do not have?

Hey, Brandon,

You can find answers to this question and many others, pitched at the
"intelligent layman" level, here:
        http://www.miketaylor.org.uk/dino/faq/index.html

 _/|_    ___________________________________________________________________
/o ) \/  Mike Taylor    <mike@indexdata.com>    http://www.miketaylor.org.uk
)_v__/\  "Do they fry your brain?  Probably, but if that's the price
         you have to pay for bandwidth ..." -- Andrew Eland on wireless
         internet.