Posted by: thoughtflashes | May 17, 2010

What Did Dinosaurs Sound Like?

In the 19th century, it was proposed that birds were derived from certain dinosaurs. Throughout most of the 20th century, however, this idea that birds had evolved from certain dinosaurs was not supported. There has more recently been validation in the last 30-40 years of the earlier theory that that some dinosaurs were probably the ancestors of birds.

Since some dinosaurs were probably a combination of reptiles and birds, I’m wondering if dinosaurs actually sounded like birds singing. I’m wondering if dinosaurs perhaps sounded like chirping warblers, or maybe crows cawing, or ducks quacking, instead of like the roaring beasts that we see on Hollywood movies. It’s also possible that they could have sounded more like reasonably silent reptiles such as turtles or crocodiles, or like hissing lizards. It’s hard to say for sure, probably.

This reminds me of a relatively new field in archaeology, called “archaeoacoustics,” where they study sounds of past monuments or artifacts. I can’t remember where I read it, but from the studies of these sounds, they found that our ancient ancestors were actually a lot more sophisticated that we thought that they were, as many ancient monuments were constructed with the purpose that incorporated the use of sounds or music for rituals or ceremonies, for example.

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