Monday, 20 July 2009

How to weigh a dinosaur

Dinosaurs sometimes left footprints in wet mud or sand which hardened to leave trace fossils. We can work out how heavy the dinosaur was, if we can compare the footprint with the mark made by a known weight in the classroom. The relationship between pressure, force and area can be used to estimate the mass of a two-legged dinosaur from the area and depth of one of its fossilised footprints. Click here to download the activity.
Trace fossils can give very valuable information on the lifestyles and environment of the organisms that created them.
The photo above shows a footprint from a large dinosaur. An impression would have to be taken of this for it to be used for this Earthlearningidea.

1 comment:

Lee said...

This blog is truly one of my few favorite - it is rare to see blogs that will teach you ways how to weigh a dinosaur! Thanks for this!