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Prehistoric Planet: TV show asked us to explore what weather the dinosaurs lived through


Still Waters
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Posted (IP: Staff) ·

When conjuring up images of when dinosaurs ruled the planet we often think of hot and humid landscapes in a world very different from our own. However, the new TV series Prehistoric Planet, narrated by Sir David Attenborough, shows dinosaurs living and indeed thriving in many types of environments, including colder regions where snowstorms, freezing fog and sea-ice were commonplace.

When the show’s producers first approached us to help understand the kinds of weather and environment that dinosaurs lived in before being wiped out around 66 million years ago, it prompted us to tackle a problem that has existed in palaeoclimate modelling for decades. That was, when scientists like us used computers to simulate, or “model”, the climate of prehistoric Earth, the models tended to make the poles much colder than evidence from fossils and rocks suggested they had actually been.

For the TV series, not only have we improved our models, but we have run the computer programmes for longer than anybody else has ever done to get the models as close to ancient “reality” as possible.

https://theconversation.com/prehistoric-planet-tv-show-asked-us-to-explore-what-weather-the-dinosaurs-lived-through-183701

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