National Dinosaur Day

Paleontologist digging up dinosaur bones in a desert, wearing safari hat, desert landscape with cacti..
National dinosaur day illustration

Welcome to the prehistoric world of National Dinosaur Day! Grab your paleontologist hat and get ready for a roaring good time as we dive deep into the land of extinct reptiles, big teeth, and even bigger fun.

When is Dinosaur Day?

It's national dinosaur day on the 15th May.

A Trip Back in Time: The Origins of National Dinosaur Day

On this day, we commemorate the ancient creatures that once roamed the Earth, capturing the imagination of both young and old alike. The origins of National Dinosaur Day can be traced back to the dino-crazed world of the internet, where enthusiasts and fans of these majestic beasts found a platform to celebrate their enormous legacy.

The online dino community, fueled by a love for these prehistoric giants, came together to establish a special day dedicated to appreciating and learning about dinosaurs. National Dinosaur Day provides an opportunity to discover the wonders of the dinosaur era, explore their fascinating fossils, and embrace all things dino-related.

This day serves as a reminder of the importance of Earth's ancient history and the incredible diversity of life that once existed.

Dino-Mite Activities to Celebrate

Wondering how to commemorate National Dinosaur Day? Fear not, we have some roaringly good suggestions! Here are a few ideas to make your celebration dino-mite:

  • Visit a natural history museum and awe at the magnificent dinosaur exhibits.
  • Organize a dino-themed movie night with friends and family, featuring classics like Jurassic Park or The Land Before Time.
  • Host a trivia night where you can test your dino knowledge and see who among your friends reigns as the ultimate dinosaur expert.
  • Get creative with dinosaur crafts and make your own fossils or dino puppets.

Fossils, Fun Facts, and… Chicken Nuggets?

Did you know? Some paleontologists suspect that birds are actually direct descendants of dinosaurs. Yes, you heard it right, those cute little feathered creatures flapping around your garden share a common ancestry with the mighty T-Rex. Next time you see a bird, give it a friendly wave and acknowledge its dino heritage!

History behind the term 'Dinosaur'


Coined by Sir Richard Owen

The term 'dinosaur' was first coined in 1841 by Sir Richard Owen, an English anatomist and paleontologist. Owen combined the Greek words 'deinos', meaning 'terrible' or 'fearfully great', and 'sauros', meaning 'lizard'. He used this term to describe a new group of extinct reptiles he had discovered.


The Great Exhibition

In 1842, the term 'dinosaur' gained widespread recognition and public attention when the Crystal Palace Exhibition was held in London. This international exhibition showcased various scientific and technological advancements, including fossil exhibits. The dinosaur fossils on display captured the imagination of the attendees and sparked a growing fascination with these ancient creatures. This led to an increased use of the term 'dinosaur' in scientific and popular literature.


Dinosauria classification

In 1854, Sir Richard Owen formally defined and classified dinosaurs as a distinct group of reptiles. He established the taxonomic group 'Dinosauria' to include these ancient reptiles, based on their shared anatomical characteristics. Owen's classification laid the foundation for further scientific study and understanding of dinosaurs.


The Bone Wars

During the late 19th century, a fierce competition between paleontologists Edward Drinker Cope and Othniel Charles Marsh, known as the 'Bone Wars', greatly contributed to the popularization and discovery of dinosaur fossils. Their rivalry fueled an intense race to discover and describe new dinosaur species, leading to an exponential increase in the number of known dinosaurs. This rapid expansion of dinosaur knowledge further solidified their place in public imagination.


Dinosaurs in Popular Culture

In 1905, the publication of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's novel 'The Lost World' introduced dinosaurs to popular culture. The story depicted an isolated land where prehistoric creatures, including dinosaurs, still thrived. This novel, along with subsequent adaptations in films, television series, and other media, played a significant role in captivating the public's imagination and reinforcing the image of dinosaurs as iconic and awe-inspiring creatures.

Did you know?

Some paleontologists suspect that birds are actually direct descendants of dinosaurs.


awareness fun

First identified

15th May 2016

Most mentioned on

15th May 2020

Total mentions


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