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Dinosaurs and Birds - The Link Between Them


Main Gallery


Dinosaur Discovery Museum’s Allosaurus

The main gallery of the Dinosaur Discovery Museum tells the story of how non-avian, theropod dinosaurs like Tyrannosaurus rex and Allosaurus gave rise to the avian dinosaurs – the birds.

This is one of the most complete transitions known from the fossil record and can be seen in action in the Museum. The gallery is a primer on dinosaurs – what they were, how we know they existed, what they looked like, how they behaved, how and why they were alike and different, and what happened to them.

The dinosaur skeletons in the main gallery are casts of actual dinosaur fossil bones. The lighter bones are casts of actual fossil bones. The black bones show those missing from the original skeletons but sculpted to replace them. Each dinosaur is labeled with information about the species.

Panels on the gallery wall answer the most-asked questions about dinosaurs. You can listen to the environmental and animal sounds in the exhibit gallery. Step back into the Mesozoic era with outdoors sounds in different terrains and weather conditions during the Age of Dinosaurs.

In association with the Carthage Institute of Paleontology and the Institute’s on-site laboratory, the Museum presents current, ongoing research in the study of dinosaurs. The Museum collaborates with the Carthage Institute of Paleontology in research, field work, and education programs. This includes the collection and preservation of dinosaur specimens for its research collections.


Dinosaurs of the Hell Creek: Expeditions of the Carthage Institute of Paleontology

Excavating skull of a Triceratops dinosaur

CIP staff and volunteers work to excavate the skull of a Triceratops they’ve nicknamed “Maddie.”

Did you ever wonder where all those dinosaur bones in Museum displays come from? Come experience Dinosaurs of the Hell Creek: Expeditions of the Carthage Institute of Paleontology and learn about Carthage’s annual summer excavation.

The Hell Creek Formation is an extremely bountiful area for paleontologists and the home to several iconic dinosaurs like Tyrannosaurus rex, Triceratops, and Edmontosaurus. The world was a much different place 65.5 million years ago and the fossils of the Hell Creek give us a glimpse into that world.

In Dinosaurs of the Hell Creek, you’ll see actual specimens from the Dinosaur Discovery Museum’s collection discovered in the Badlands of southeastern Montana and get to take a behind-the-scenes look at the camp life of the Carthage Institute of Paleontology crew and their volunteers.