Dinosaurs in Herds
We often see dinosaurs in ones and twos in museums. Even in movies, dinosaurs are often loners. Sometimes they’re in a group, but rarely do we imagine them like wildebeest or bison–thousands of them surging through the Mesozoic landscape. We know from their trackways and their death assemblages that they migrated in herds. We have also found their nesting grounds. So imagining dinosaurs as solitary is perhaps the product of an individualistic culture.
After you’re done reading this post, close your eyes. Picture your favorite herbivorous dinosaur. Maybe a long-necked Brachiosaurus or a ceratopsian like Centrosaurus. Now imagine them stretching across the horizon, kicking up dust. The herd moves along, grunting, pounding the earth with their footsteps. They are trailed by predators, large and small. Above, pterosaurs are swirling in the warming thermal updrafts. And through the oppressive heat, wind, and thunderstorms, the herd moves on–driven by primal instincts toward food and shelter and the rhythms of life that continue in our time.