Hot-Blooded or Cold-Blooded??
Back in 1968, Robert T. Bakker, a young aspiring paleontologist finishing an undergraduate education at Yale, wrote a brief article, "The Superiority of Dinosaurs," in which he contended that dinosaurs were "fast, agile, energetic creatures." According to Bakker, their advanced physiology was so incredible that even the 10-ton ceratopsians could outrun a human. A year later, Dr. John H. Ostrom (also at Yale) described an unusual new theropod dinosaur, Deinonychus antirrhopus, which he envisioned as "an active and very agile predator." These men were not the first to propose an active nature for the dinosaurs; many others had before; but their work can be cited as the beginning of the ongoing debate on dinosaur physiology that rages even today, making the news with every new hypothesis or controversy.
We'll take a quick review of what has transpired in the last few decades. Form your own opinions on what dinosaurs were like. Were they sluggish and stupid as the old conventional wisdom said, or were they mammal or bird-like in their high activity as in Jurassic Park? Or can we even be sure what they were like? A few preliminary warnings:
What is "hot-blooded"? What is "cold-blooded"? Actually, there is no such thing scientifically. The popular term "hot-blooded" basically means having an average body temperature higher than that of the surroundings. "Cold-blooded" is obviously the opposite. Scientists have more technical terms that they use:
Lines of evidence
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