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What Is Pangea?

Pangaea, sometimes spelled Pangea, was a supercontinent that made up the earth that existed millions of years ago. You can often hear people refer to Pangaea as the “home of the Dinosaurs”, but it was much more than that! According to science, it has existed for more than 100 million years!

The name Pangaea, Greek for “all” (pan) and “Earth” (Gaia) came from Scientist Alfred Wegener, who introduced theories about how continents drift. The Earth is roughly 4.5 billion years old, and over this time, several different supercontinents have formed and broken up because of churning and circulation in the Earth’s mantle. The study of this movement is called “Plate Tectonics”. Scientists were studying plate tectonics way back in 1912, and since then, have learned a lot. This science of plate tectonics is just one reason we know how earthquakes and tsunamis happen.

Alfred Wegener

When Pangaea was formed, what we now know as Africa joined up with South America, with North America using Florida to get between them, kind of like when the kids join the parents in bed in the morning. The other continents kind of hung out on either side of them.

Pangaea

Scientists believe that Pangea started splitting apart about 200 million years ago to form the continents and oceans we know and love today. This is why we can find similar dinosaur fossils in different areas, even if they are continents apart! Stegosaurus fossils have been found in North America, Western Europe, South India, South Africa, and China! They sure did like to get around! Fossils of small, land-based reptiles have also been found on different continents, and since they wouldn’t have been able to swim long distances, it further gives us proof that the continents we have now were once all joined together.

Before and After

Pangaea, the famous home of the dinosaurs, probably won’t be the last of the continents to be a supercontinent. The Earth is always changing and drifting, and over millions of years, it is possible that the continents that we have now will form another supercontinent. If humans are still around when that happens, it sure will make travel a bit easier, right? With the science of plate tectonics, it is really interesting to learn about how our earth shifts and changes!

To get more dinosaur info and fun activities, and to hear about the latest The Dinoverse promotions, sign up for our email newsletter! You’ll even get a gift from Vester the Velociraptor on your birthday! And don’t forget to follow us on Instagram!

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Dinosaur Museums

Dinosaur museums are the best place to learn about dinosaurs. Here in Canada, we are really lucky to have many museums that centre around Dinosaurs! If you travel to Drumheller, Alberta, where many dinosaur fossils have been found, you’ll get to experience a variety of dinosaur specimens. Canada has an amazing dinosaur history for you to explore, and new dinosaur fossils are being found all the time!

George: Lambeosaurus at UBC

You don’t have to travel to Alberta, Canada to see dinosaurs though! Almost all of the provinces in Canada have museums with dinosaur exhibits. Not only that, there are many universities that study dinosaurs too, like the University of British Columbia. Victoria, British Columbia also has a place called “Dino Lab“, where they restore dinosaur fossils and get them ready for exhibits all around the world! Read more about Dino Lab in this blog here!

Dino Lab, Victoria

Usually places where a large amount of dinosaur fossils have been found have the largest museums for dinos and dinosaur artefacts. The Jurassic Morrison Formation in the Western part of the United States has provided lots of dinosaur fossils, including stegosaurus and Tyrannosaurus Rex fossils! The Field Museum in Chicago has the largest, best preserved, and most complete of all the T-Rex fossils found. She is so well known, they simply call her “Sue”.

Sue: Tyrannosaurus Rex at the Field Museum in Chicago

Dinosaur museums are educational and fun for the whole family. There is so much to learn about dinosaurs, and we are really lucky to have so much access to what paleontologists have found over the last hundred years. If you want to take a trip to see dinosaur fossils, I’m sure you won’t have to travel very far!

Royal Tyrrell Museum Drumheller, Alberta

What dinosaur museums have you visited? Tag us on Instagram in your dinosaur adventures! We would love to see them! And sign up for our email newsletter to get more fun dinosaur stuff delivered to your inbox, including a discount to The Dinoverse shop!

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Dinosaur Poop

Did you know that Dinosaur poop is as important to science as dinosaur bones? When one of our Jr Paleontologists suggested I write about dinosaur poop, or scientifically called “coprolite”, I thought, “Ew.” I had images of Elly from Jurassic Park up to her elbows in Triceratops poop! It definitely seemed like a topic a kid would be interested in! However, after doing a bit of research, I found it quite fascinating! Coprolites are the fossils of ancient poop that have been fossilized over millions of years because it’s been buried in sediment like ash, mud or sand. While the poop of dinosaurs may not seem like a topic you want to focus on, in terms of science, it turns out, it’s incredibly important!

Contains Plant Remains

Coprolites can tell us about what food dinosaurs ate and what life was like back then. Entomologist Emmanuel Arriaga-Varela found at least 10 water beetles and about another 20 fragments of heads and wings in one square inch of dinosaur dung from a sample of coprolite in Poland. That’s a big deal! This helps science researchers to understand the different types of organisms that were living back then, and gives us evidence of what dinosaurs ate. It also helps us understand dinosaur behavior.

Contains Bones & Teeth

That image of Elly I mentioned? Well, sauropods produced over a ton of dung every day, but scientists find more fossils of carnivore poop because it contains bones and teeth. Bones and teeth are rich in calcium, and helped the dinosaur poop to become fossils easier. The largest coprolite scientists have found is 17 inches long and almost 7 inches wide. That’s a big poop! Because it contains a lot of bones, scientists think that the poop probably belonged to a T-Rex or other large carnivore.

Barnum, T Rex

Paleontologists have also found dinosaur poop in the bones of herbivore dinosaurs. They believe this is because some herbivores didn’t have the teeth they needed to properly break down what they ate. Stones would be swallowed by the herbivores to help the digestion process. Sometimes, they would mistake coprolites for stones and swallow those!

You would think dinosaur poop would be easy to find, but coprolite is very rare. Paleontologists get really excited when they find dinosaur poop because feces decay so rapidly, it didn’t often get the chance to properly become a fossil. These “trace fossils” are just as important as “body fossils” to the science of dinosaurs. It helps us to learn how dinosaurs lived, where they lived and what they ate.

Dinosaur poop, or coprolite, might seem like a strange thing to study, but clearly it’s just as important as the dinosaur bones themselves. I would have never in a million years thought that dinosaur dung was of use, but these fossils from the meals of the past are very special finds for science. When dinosaur poop is found, it gives us so much information about our favourite extinct animals. I’m glad I have Jr Paleontologists to keep me informed! If you have a favourite dinosaur topic you would like to read about, connect with us on Instagram! And sign up for our email newsletter for more fun stuff about dinosaurs! You will even get a discount for The Dinoverse shop!

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Dinosaur Comics

@dinosandcomics

Reading Dinosaur comics can make a boring day better! There are many dinosaur comics available, and just like most comic strips, dinosaur comics can be great entertainment, while also making you think. Some dino comics will share stories we can connect with, and some are just plain fun. Instagram is a great place to find new stories that feature various dinos like T-Rex, Brontosaurus and more! Here are a few of the best dinosaur comics that we like to read.

@dinosandcomics

Dinosandcomics:
This relatable dinosaur comic has a really great way of addressing mental health issues. The art is simple and clean, and just about every one can find something real in the dinosaur friends and their struggles. The dinosaurs in these comics show a lot of love and compassion for each other. After reading these short comic strips featuring a T-Rex and other dinos, you will come away feeling happy and warm. Go to the Dinosandcomics shop to see all the various merch with the adorable dinosaur characters based on author K and her friend James, too!

@Dinotoons

DinoToons:
Dinosaur comics that explore important things are great for making us think, while also entertaining us. This comic by Phoenix Baldwin is about a dinosaur going through a change and addresses various LGBTQ+ topics. The stories in this comic can be a great tool to help us understand ourselves and others. The design of the dinosaurs are cute and great for both kids and adults. Check out the dinotoons book that’s available now too; perfect to share with someone who needs a smile.

@fossilfoolscomic

Fossil Fools Comics:
This dinosaur comic is just plain fun! The art design is great, and the comics will make you laugh. Join the dinosaurs in these short comic strips while they live their lives, just generally entertaining you! This dinosaur comic by Alexander Fridlin is perfect to share with other people, to brighten their day too. You can check out their patreon at fossilfoolscomic.com to get early access to all the fun these dinosaurs can bring you!

@theprimitivewar

Primitive War:
If you like to read more graphic novel type comics, this new dinosaur comic is the one you need! Based on the Primitive War novel series, this dino comic is about what things would have happened if dinosaurs were made, Jurassic Park style, during the Cold War. Just think; the ravages of war… and also dinosaurs. The world gets a bit crazy. With amazing art by Babisu Kourtis & Maja Opacic, this dinosaur comic is sure to become a favourite of those who love a good graphic novel about T-Rex and other dinosaurs. These stories about dinosaurs are best for adults and teens. You can check out their indiegogo for early access!

@smbccomics

Reading comics about dinosaurs is a fun and friendly way to both get entertainment and to help us think about and deal with the problems we face every day like mental health issues. A comic about dinosaurs can be great to share around the office, with friends or with kids, or more serious content for adults and older teenagers. Dinosaur comics can be a little piece of therapy, a conversation starter or even educational. I hope you check out the dinosaur comics we featured here! If there is a comic featuring T-Rex and other dinosaurs that you like, you can let us know on Instagram, and sign up for our email newsletter to get dinosaur news, activities and general fun dinosaur stuff! You will even get a discount for The Dinoverse shop!

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Dinosaur Party

If you read last week’s blog about Internet Ninjaneer Lisa’s Dino Lab birthday party, you’ll already know that dinosaur parties are our favourite kind of parties here at the Dinoverse! I mean, any party that involves dinosaurs is the best kind of party, don’t you think? You can incorporate dinosaur ideas into any party really, whether it’s a kids dinosaur birthday party, an adults New Year’s Eve party, or just to set a fun theme for a summer get together!

There are lots of really cool decorations on the internet you can shop for to use to bring dinosaurs to your party. You can shop Etsy for tons of cute dinosaur balloons, both shaped like dinosaurs, or dinosaurs printed on regular balloons. You can also decorate with a dinosaur banner, dinosaur garland, and different hanging decor. These options can really level up your dinosaur birthday party decorations!

Every dinosaur party needs cake! No matter if you are having adorable dino cupcakes, or a Jurassic sized cake, dinosaur cake and cupcake toppers are an easy way to decorate for your dinosaur party! For more complex decorations, you can use chocolate moulds to make chocolate dinosaurs or fossils to decorate with. Dinosaur sprinkles are pretty fun decorations too!

Of course you’ll need entertainment at your dinosaur party! There are lots of different dinosaur crafts you can make with the kids like dinosaur eggs (check out this blog for how to make them!). Playing dinosaur games is a lot of fun at a party too (read about our favourites here), and of course a dinosaur pinata is always a hit at a dinosaur party (see what I did there?). You can buy a pinata or make one yourself at home out of a balloon and lots of newspaper and glue; the internet is full of cool tutorials!

Last, but certainly not least, the dinosaur goodie bags! There are a plethora of dinosaur party favors out there. Dinosaur stickers are the perfect addition to any treat bag, as well as these vegan, chocolate dinosaur eggs from @spencerofalltrades. They even have tiny dinos inside! You can get dinosaur lollipops, little plastic dinos, dinosaur shaped crayons or wine glass charms. Everyone at your party will be really excited when they get to excavate their personal collection of dinosaur themed party bag to see the neat gifts you have filled it with!

A dinosaur party is definitely the theme I love best. Kara, Lead Illustrator for The Dinoverse, had a dinosaur themed wedding, so clearly dinosaurs aren’t just for kids birthday parties! All of us at The Dinoverse love to party Jurassic Style, and would love to see your dinosaur party photos! Send us an email or tag us with your pictures on Instagram! We would love to hear all about your dinosaur party! And don’t forget to sign up for our email newsletter! You will hear about fun dino stuff, and even get a dinosaur treat on your birthday from Vester the Velociraptor!

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Dino Lab

I want to tell you about one of the greatest birthday parties I have ever been to. It was so much fun, and super educational too! And, yes, full of dinosaurs!

The funniest part of this story is that the birthday party wasn’t for a kid. Nope; it was for our Internet Ninja, Lisa! She decided that the best way to celebrate her birthday was with dinosaurs (obviously!), and so she booked us all to visit Dino Lab in Victoria, BC, Canada. When she first called them, they asked her twice if she was sure this was for an adult’s birthday; I guess back then (it was in the “before times”) it seemed unusual for adults to have a birthday party at Dino Lab. Tours, yes, birthday parties? Not so much.

Oh boy was it awesome! The two lovely people who met us in the shop to get us started for our tour knew everything about dinosaurs! They took us on the coolest tour, showing us many fossils, specimens, and even a giant T-Rex skull! There was so much to learn, and they were also incredibly patient with us. We all suddenly turned into 10 year old kids, asking a million questions a minute, and wanting to see everything. There was lots to touch, hold, and take pictures with; it was very exciting.

The next stop on our tour was the actual lab itself, where we all got to don lab coats and spend time with the tools, gently sanding away rock to try to expose real dinosaur fossils! This was very serious work! And also a little loud.

After we had a chance to grind away for a bit (unfortunately, none of us made any great discoveries), we went on to the party room, where we were met with a really fun dinosaur cake! Lisa blew out her candles all in one go (amazing!) and we had a really great time talking about all the cool dinosaur stuff we had just seen.

Our last stop before heading out was the gift shop. Everybody loves a gift shop, especially when it is full of dinosaurs! A few of us purchased stickers, some purchased art, and one person even bought an actual fossil! It was the best shopping spree ever! Fun Fact: The Dino Lab shop now has exclusive stickers from The Dinoverse that you can’t get anywhere else!

We had so much fun at the Dino Lab! If you haven’t been there yet, you really should put it on your list of things to do this summer. They have all different types of programs for kids and adults, including the opportunity to go on your own real dig! And if you haven’t guessed it yet, we here at The Dinoverse think Dino Lab birthday parties are definitely the best birthday parties!

To get more dinosaur info and fun activities, and to hear about the latest Dinoverse promotions, sign up for our email newsletter! You’ll even get a gift from Vester the Velociraptor on your birthday!

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How To Make Dinosaur Eggs

Dinosaur eggs are a fun idea for a kids birthday party! They are really easy to make, and kids love to dig their little hands into the dinosaur egg to find the hidden treasure inside! We have a few jr. palaeontologists here at The Dinoverse, so of course I had to make dinosaur eggs!

I used two different diy recipes to see which one would work the best for our dinosaur egg party. Both of them use coffee grounds, salt and flour, so easy ingredients to find! The second recipe calls for sand, so I used purple craft sand. Of course dinosaurs and other little fossil treasure ideas for the kids to dig out are needed. It was super fun making these diy dinosaur eggs!

If you are like me, you brewed your morning coffee and then instead of putting the grounds in the compost, you saved them. If you aren’t a coffee drinker, or don’t have a coffee drinker in the house, that’s ok! Brew the coffee a few hours before you want to get started so both the grounds and the coffee have a chance to cool down before you use them. Get out a baking tray and line it with parchment paper. Then, when it’s time to start, get your hands in there! Mix everything together! It’s quite a fun sensory experience. We used pink craft sand that I bought at the dollar store, and it gave our Dinosaur eggs a lovely pinky-purple color! No one really knows exactly what color Dinosaur eggs really were, right?

One recommendation; don’t add all the liquid at once. We found that recipe 1 with the sand was REALLY hard to work with when all the water was added. We ended up adding more salt, sand, flour and coffee grounds just to be able to cover our little dinos. Recipe 2, however, needed more coffee! It was quite dry; that could have been because my grounds were a couple days old, and quite dry.

Once it’s all mixed up, start forming your Dinosaur eggs! Put a little mix into your hand. Place your tiny dino treasure in the center, and then cover it with more mix. Form it a bit to make sure the dino is hidden well, and then place it on your baking tray.

Once all your Dinosaur eggs are made, you have 2 options. You can bake your dinosaur eggs in the oven at 200° , or just leave them out for about a week to dry. We baked ours for about 45 min in the oven. They came out firm and holding together nicely, but still fairly soft. We decided to let them sit a few days, to see if they would dry out some more.

Recipe #1: With the Sand
This one turned out much softer overall and so would be the one to go for if you are making them for younger kids or toddlers. Our preschool Jr Palaeontologist had an easy time cracking into this one, and the look of awe and surprise when she saw the plastic dinosaur in the middle was awesome! The dough for this recipe was much harder to work with, and the dinosaur eggs didn’t look much like a traditional egg shape, but is that really the most important thing when you have a chance to excavate your own dinosaur?

Recipe #2: With Coffee
This one was much more difficult to get into. After baking for 45 min, and then drying out on the counter for a week, our Jr Palaeontologists had to use metal instruments to get into them. Thank goodness our assistants had a chisel and hammer close by! The bright side of that is it was a much more realistic experience for the older kids. They got to chip away for a bit, rather than cracking the egg right away. It took a bit more effort, and therefore the DInosaur reward was that much more egg-citing for them! This recipe was much easier to work with when making the eggs too, and a bit more egg-looking. It would be a great one for an older kids birthday party, as long as you had enough supervision for the tools (or maybe didn’t let them dry for quite as long)

Overall, this was a really fun activity. All our Jr Palaeontologists had a great time, excavating their dinosaur treasure from the eggs. We will definitely be doing this for a Dinosaur birthday party in the future. I highly recommend you give it a try if you have anyone who loves dinosaurs in your world! If you want to be notified when we have more exciting dinosaur activities on our blog, follow us on Instagram! And don’t forget to sign up for our email newsletter to have Tatum, the Tyrannosaurus send you fun dinosaur stuff! You’ll even get a discount in The Dinoverse shop!

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Facts About Mosasaurus

You know that intense scene in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, where the guy is clinging to the ladder under the helicopter? They fly away, barely escaping a T-Rex, just to be then eaten by the mighty Mosasaurus? You heave a sigh of relief, just get it snatched from you mid-breath. Well, although it’s a really cool scene, and even more cool that the Mosasaurus is finally getting some attention in pop culture, they don’t have all the facts quite right.

Mosasurus was not as big as Jurassic World would like us to think. They were actually not much bigger than Tyrannosaurus Rex! The largest discovered specimen had a length of up to 17 metres. The largest blue whales today are around 30 metres long, so the Mosasaurus wasn’t even the largest sea creature the earth has known.

That doesn’t mean it wasn’t a terrifying creature! Mosasaurus had double-hinged jaws that would allow it to swallow its prey whole. It also had a second row of teeth on the top of its mouth, used to keep a strong hold of its meal. This apex predator from the Late Cretaceous period had a skull that was designed for crushing and they would make easy meals of other sea dwellers, such as fish, sharks and even other Mosasaurs.

Technically Mosasaurus isn’t a dinosaur; they were prehistoric marine reptiles similar to modern-day lizards and snakes rather than dinosaurs, but for dinosaur lovers like me, that’s just semantics! The name Mosasaur was given to this mighty aquatic beast because it was first found in Holland, by the Meuse River, “Mosa”, and “Sauros” is Greek for “Lizard”. Mosasaurus was one of the very first dinosaurs ever discovered, way back in the 1700’s, however back then they didn’t know what dinosaurs were, and thought it was a whale. It wasn’t until the 1820’s when Georges Cuvier examined it, that scientists realised that extinct species had lived on the earth before us.

It’s super cool to see different dinosaurs represented in movies and pop culture, even if they aren’t exactly accurate. To be fair, what we actually know about each dino often changes with each new discovery, so who knows? Maybe one day we will find larger fossils of Mosasaurus! Regardless, this massive sea monster is one of my favourite dinosaurs, even if it’s just a little bit scary!

What’s your favourite Dinosaur? Send us an email or tag us with your pictures on Instagram! We would love to hear about them! And don’t forget to sign up for our email newsletter! You will hear about fun dino stuff, and even get a dinosaur treat on your birthday from Vester the Velociraptor!

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Dinosaur gif

A Dinosaur gif is a great way to add a little bit of fun into everyday communication. Dinosaur gifs are often the way my friends and I communicate. When talking about my kids running away from housework, a running dinosaur gif often shows up. Similarly, a roaring T-Rex gif usually makes it into that conversation! My husband likes the Jurassic World gif of Owen Grady and the Velocirators. Jurassic World gifs are abundant in our communications.

Dinosaur gifs are also a way to make your messages more interesting. I am a bit of a language nerd, and find myself fascinated by the way how we talk evolves. Dinosaur gifs are a big part of that. Did you know that gifs have been around since 1987, and that there were even “protogifs” that date back to the 19th century? They weren’t as interesting, of course. 19th century protogifs weren’t triceratops gifs. Scientists are even using dinosaur gifs to punctuate their thoughts, or other types of gifs to show examples of their work. Just like dinosaur memes, dinosaur gifs are now a part of everyday written communication.

Funny dinosaur gifs make a great way to lighten any message. How can you not laugh at the pole dancing dinosaur gif? Show your enthusiasm with a happy dinosaur gif or even say “I love you” with a kissing dinosaur gif. A simple “Hi” dinosaur gif will be sure to brighten anyone’s day. Dinosaur gifs and memes belong in almost every conversation.

What are your favourite dinosaur gifs? We would love to see them all! Tag us on Instagram, and don’t forget to sign up for our email newsletter to get the news, activities and general fun dinosaur stuff in your inbox! You’ll even get a discount to The Dinoverse shop!

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Dinosaur Treats

@spencerofalltrades

What could be better than Dinosaur treats? Whether it’s in cake form, chocolate, or Rice Krispies, dinosaur treats are the way to this lady’s heart! Dinosaur treats can be a tasty addition to snack time, and can make your dinosaur party food even more special. Here are a few ways that you can add those Jurassic treats to your day!

A dinosaur themed birthday party for kids can be made extra special with dinosaur cakes or cupcakes! Kids will love this tasty dino dessert, and the nice thing about these cakes and cupcakes is that you can usually buy them, so that makes them really easy!

@twosisterscrafting

Dinosaur cookies and rice krispies treats are also a great way to go anytime. Here at The Dinoverse, we looove rice krispie treats! These dino snacks are excellent for a treat tray, or for a dinosaur birthday party. Kids love the dinosaur shape, and if you are extra fancy, sprinkles, candy and icing can be used to make this food even more decorated! You can find many recipes for Rice Krispie treats online, and if you want a great recipe for DInosaur Cookies, check out this blog post for Vester’s favorite dinosaur cookie recipe!

If chocolate is your treat of choice, @spencerofalltrades has got you covered! These delicious vegan dark chocolate dino eggs even have a secret! There is a tiny dinosaur inside! Kids and adults alike will love cracking these gluten, dairy and soy free dinosaur treats open to find the hidden dino treat within! Easter egg hunts will never be the same once the kids get to crack open that Jurassic treat!

@spencerofalltrades

Should you want to get really fancy at the next dinosaur party for the kids, you can print off your own chocolate bar wrapper. Just download the wrapper and wrap it around a standard chocolate bar. You can even personalise it! How creative is that? The kids at your party will love to get a chocolate dinosaur treat with their own name on it!

@boobeandesign

No matter what dinosaur treat is your favourite, treats that feature dinosaurs can make a snack time so much more fun! A dinosaur party for kids is made extra special with some of these food ideas, and you can add a little excitement to your regular snack time too! I hope you enjoyed our suggestions for dinosaur treats, and if you have other treats featuring dinosaurs you like, send us an email or tag us with your pictures on Instagram! We would love to hear about them! And don’t forget to sign up for our email newsletter! You will hear about fun dino stuff, and even get a dinosaur treat on your birthday from Vester the Velociraptor!