Giant sauropod dinosaur skeletons from Patagonia; dinosaurs with feathers from China; a tiny dinosaur tail in Burmese amber – complete down to every detail of its filament-like feathers, skin, bones and mummified muscles. Dinosaurs continue to regularly cause a media sensation. Remarkable new fossil finds are the lifeblood of modern palaeobiology, but it is the advances in technologies and methods that have allowed the revolution in the scope and confidence of the field. Over the past twenty years, the study of dinosaurs has become a true scientific discipline. New technologies have revealed secrets locked in the prehistoric bones in ways that nobody predicted – we can now work out the colour of dinosaurs, their bite forces, top speeds and even how they cared for their young.
The Dinosaurs Rediscovered gathers together all the latest palaeontological evidence and takes us behind the scenes on expeditions and in museum laboratories, tracing the transformation of dinosaur study from its roots in antiquated natural history to a highly technical, computational and indisputably scientific field today. Michael J. Benton explores what we know of the world of the dinosaurs, how dinosaur remains are found and excavated, and how palaeontologists read the details of the lives of dinosaurs from fossils – their colours, their growth, feeding and locomotion, how they grew from egg to adult, how they sensed the world, and even whether we will ever be able to bring them back to life. Dinosaurs are still very much a part of our world.