Extinct Animals

Extinct animals are those species which are no longer living. This group includes prehistoric animals like dinosaurs and ice-age mammals, as well as moden species like the Dodo.

Topics to Explore

Learn More

Lonesome George Lived to Be 100 Years Old. Genome Sequencing Is Figuring Out How

Lonesome George, the last of his species of tortoises, died in the Galapagos in 2012. But scientists have now finished analyzing his DNA and found some fascinating clues about giant tortoise longevity.

Newly Discovered Gordodon Beast Was an Herbivorous Pioneer

This fin-backed pelycosaur roamed what's now the American Southwest 298 million years ago. And it's by far the oldest-known vegetarian tetrapod with gaps between some of its teeth, which is a big deal.

How Two Rival Mammoths Lost an Epic Duel 12,000 Years Ago

The battle clearly ended in a slow death for both massive male beasts.

Spinosaurus Was a Lousy Swimmer, Study Says

The villainous dinosaur from 'Jurassic Park' probably never had an affinity for water.

Prehistoric Turtle Had a Toothless Beak But No Shell

A 220 million-year-old turtle fossil discovered in China is the first of its kind ever to be found.

Who Owns the Rights to a Dinosaur Skeleton?

Someone just paid $2.36 million to take home an exquisite dinosaur skeleton. The sale has added to the growing scientific anxiety about the commodification of precious, irreplaceable fossils.

Today’s Birds Likely Evolved from Ground-Dwelling Feathered Dinosaurs

New research suggests the asteroid impact that killed the dinosaurs probably burned Earth's forests, requiring modern birds' common ancestors to live on the ground.

The Mastodon Boneyard That Stole Thomas Jefferson’s Heart

Massive mastodons roamed lower Kentucky during the last ice age. Jefferson was so fascinated by the creatures he was convinced they still roamed the plains in the 1800s.

Possible 'Baby' T. Rex Enters Dinosaurian Debate

University of Kansas paleontologists are comparing the bones of a new T. rex to determine if they've got a juvenile Tyrannosaurus or a mature Nanotyrannus on their hands.

Ancient Fish Strutted Seafloor Before Land Animals

Walking evolved not on land but underwater.

Rare Egyptian Fossil Find Holds Clues About African Dinosaur Migration

Could this exciting find help bridge the gaps between Africa's late Cretaceous fossil record and that of other continents?

Scientists Unearth Another Archaeopteryx, an 'Icon of Evolution'

The fossilized find provides us with another example of the oldest bird species we know of.

Huge Cache of Pterosaur Eggs Discovered in China

Paleontologists in China hit the jackpot of fossilized pterosaur eggs.

Nearly Complete Tyrannosaur Skeleton Found in Utah

The American Southwest was once prime tyrannosaur country, as a newfound skeleton reminds us.

Velociraptors Likely Hunted Solo, Despite Pop Culture Depiction

Scientists are at odds about whether Velociraptors worked together to take down their prey.

Prehistoric Frog Had a Monstrous Bite

A new study found that the Beelzebufo frog had a bite strong enough to take down dinosaurs.

Prehistoric 'Hell Ant' Sported Metal Spike for Sucking Blood

Instead of a mouth, the hell ant had blades and a metal horn to catch its prey. Ouch.

New Study Sheds Light on How Plesiosaurs Used Their Flippers to Swim

A new study suggests the extinct aquatic reptiles used all four flippers for uniquely efficient underwater motion.

Why Did the T. Rex Have Such Puny Arms?

Tyrannosaurus rex was a giant predator that roamed the earth, so why did it have such tiny arms?

Why Won't Hollywood Depict Dinosaurs With Feathers?

Scientists generally agree that dinosaurs sported colorful, feather-like plumage. So do moviemakers lack imagination, or do audiences?

Boy Literally Stumbles Across Million-year-old Fossils During New Mexico Hike

Accidentally tripping on and discovering the fossilized skull of an extinct giant elephant seems like a 9-year-old's dream come true.

4-foot Flying Turkeys Roamed Ancient Australia

The megapodes were supertall, but that didn't keep them from taking flight.

World's Largest Dinosaur Footprints Discovered in Australia

The colossal footprints of an herbivorous dinosaur found in western Australia might belong to the biggest dinosaur ever.

This Mammalian Ancestor Was Also Earth's Earliest Venomous Vertebrate

When we think venom, we think cobras and vipers. But Euchambersia was a reptile, a mammalian ancestor, and venomous, according to new fossil analysis.

'E.T.' For Real? Newly Discovered 100 Million-year-old Insect Looks Like Alien

This insect's appearance and characteristics are so unusual, it has received its own scientific order.


Recommended