DINOSAURS! Exhibit To Be On Display At Houston Zoo Through October

August 31, 2010

DINOSAURS! will remain at the Houston Zoo through the end of October.

DINOSAURS! At the Houston Zoo features10 life-like animatronic dinosaurs presented in a wooded, landscaped setting.  The Houston Zoo’s horticulture department selected plant species for the exhibit that represent those found in the fossil record.

State-of-the art electronics control the dinosaur’s fluid, choreographed movements, punctuated by spine chilling roars.  Along the exhibit’s winding trail, guests will be greeted by knowledgeable guides who can answer questions about each species.

Created by Billings Productions of McKinney, Texas, each dinosaur is built on a steel frame and covered with an intricately designed foam rubber ‘skin’ and painstakingly hand painted.

Baryonyx – Name means: “Heavy Claw”
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Baryonyx had crocodile-like jaws and teeth and is one of few dinosaurs to have preyed upon fish. When first discovered, its enormous, foot-long claws were actually thought to be feet.

Brachiosaurus – Name means: “Arm Lizard”
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Brachiosaurus was one of the tallest and largest known dinosaurs, eating over 400 pounds of food every day. Scientists believe it had a very large, powerful heart to pump blood all the way up its long neck.

Dilophosaurus – Name means: “Double-Crested Lizard”

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Dilophosaurus had paired semi-circular plates that grew on top of its head. It was bipedal (stood on two feet) and extremely fast-moving, running at speeds of up to 17 mph. Their hind legs and feet were armed with very powerful claws and were likely used as weapons and for locomotion.

Dimetrodon – Name means: “Two Measures of Teeth”
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The Dimetrodon preceded the earliest dinosaurs by more than 40 million years. Interesting characteristics of the Dimetrodon included two types of teeth (shearing and sharp) and a spiny sail along its back likely used for defense, thermoregulation, and mating rituals.

Euoplocephalus – Name means: “Well-armored Head”
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The Euoplocephalus had bony horns on its head, large spikes along its body, a club-like tail, and bony plates embedded in the skin on top of its body. Recent studies suggest that its mace-like tail struck with over 5,500 pounds of force.

Parasaurolophus – Name means: “Beside Crested Lizard”

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The Parasaurolophus had a hollow head crest that is believed to have been used to produce a distinctive call to other members of the herd. It relied on herding, acute senses, and above-average intelligence for protection against predators.

Parasaurolophus – Egg Nest

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Because Parasaurolophus babies do not have fully formed limbs, hatchlings may have remained in the nest for over eight months. Hatchlings grew four inches in length each month.  Once outside the nest, they may have followed the mother in a similar manner as ducklings.

Stegosaurus – Name means: “Roof Lizard” or “Plated Lizard”

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One of the most famous and well-known dinosaurs, the Stegosaurus is characterized by its broad triangular plates. Preserved trackways suggest that the Stegosaurus led a solitary life. Not known for being a very intelligent dinosaur, its brain was only about the size of a walnut.

Triceratops – Name means: “Three-horned Face”
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Triceratops horns were most likely used to display dominance; there was one above the snout and two above each eye. Scientists believe that the Triceratops had up to 800 closely-packed teeth. Although this has been the most commonly discovered dinosaur, it most likely lived solitary lifestyles.

Tyrannosaurus Rex – Name means: “Tyrant Lizard King”

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The Tyrannosaurus Rex was one of the largest, fastest, most powerful, and most feared dinosaurs. Scientific tests have shown that the T-Rex had the greatest bite force of any dinosaur. Its cone-shaped, serrated teeth were continually replaced. Some researchers suggest its stomach held nearly 500 pounds of meat at once.

The Zoo is open daily through Oct. 31. DINOSAURS! At the Houston Zoo is $2 per person with regular Zoo admission.

The last ticket will be sold at 6:30 p.m. daily; last entry at 6:45 p.m. daily.

For more information about the exhibit visit, www.houstonzoo.org/dinos.

InstantNewsWestu Staff

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