Science 3: Mass Extinction of Dinosaurs
Keep a stiff upper lip, Shmoopers. Today's lesson is about how all the dinosaurs died. Before we got to ride any of them. Even once.
|Elementary and Middle School||3rd Grade|
So while it's definitely pretty sad that they aren't around today for us to enjoy, we all
might be a little better off without this...
Or swarms of these running around. [Dinosaurs tormenting guys on a bike]
But as grateful as we are to not have to worry about being some dino's afternoon snack…
Why are they gone?
Well, scientists believe a massive extinction of dinosaurs occurred around 66 million years ago. [Scientist working in a lab]
But while scientists agree that this extinction definitely happened, they disagree on exactly [Dinosaur disappears off a cliff]
how it went down.
For example, one popular theory is that an asteroid hit the earth around this time, wiping
out all of the dinosaurs on the planet. [Asteroid hitting earth]
Another theory is that instead of an asteroid, it was actually volcanoes throughout a large
area in India that caused the dinosaurs to go extinct, erupting over a period of thousands [Volcano erupting]
Yeesh…maybe someone should've given those volcanoes a Snickers….they're not themselves
when they're hungry.
Another theory is that the earth kept getting colder and colder, and because dinosaurs are [Dinosaurs shaking with cold]
cold-blooded, and electric blankets weren't invented yet, they weren't able to survive.
And some scientists think, "Hey, the more theories, the merrier," and think it was some
sort of combination of all three that led to the extinction of the dinosaurs.
But regardless of how it happened, we know that 70% of the animals that lived at this
time went extinct.
The remaining 30% of animals that survived included small rodent mammals, crocodiles, [A rodent, crocodile and a bird appear]
and some birds.
So yeah, it was a pretty tough time for life on earth.
The only time period that was scarier?
The '80s…seriously, the clothing… the hair do's.. [Man thinks about the 80's time period]
But it doesn't necessarily take a giant meteor or a series of volcanoes to cause a species
to go extinct.
You've probably heard of plenty of animals that are endangered or going extinct even [A polar bear laying on a rock]
Recent examples of animal species that have gone extinct include the Javan Tiger,
the Golden Toad, and the Passenger Pigeon.
And there are many more species that are critically endangered and nearing extinction, including [A baboon crying]
the Black Rhino, the Mountain Gorilla, the Bengal Tiger, and the Leatherback Turtle.
What's worse is that many species are endangered because of us. [A bear dead on a log and a man appears]
Humans are either hunting them or destroying their habitats.
Some humans can be the worst.
That's why it's so important that we do our best to protect all species of plants and
animals in order to keep them alive and well for years to come. [Monkey family protecting a young monkey]
And in case you still need to be convinced, just look at this photo of a baby leatherback turtle.
How can you say no to that face? [Hand holding a small leatherback turtle]