Study: Dinosaurs didn’t roar, but quacked or cooed

FILE - This May 17, 2000 file photo shows Sue, the largest and most complete Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton ever found, on public display at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green, File)

AUSTIN, TX (WCMH) — A study released in July reveals that dinosaurs didn’t roar, but probably quacked or honked like ducks.

“From complex songs to simple honks, birds produce sounds using a unique vocal organ called the syrinx,” a study written by paleontologist Julia Clarke says.

Despite what the movies, books and your childhood have told you, that means that dinosaurs in the Mesozoic Era probably sounded more like a duck than the terrifying T-Rex in “Jurassic Park.”

In an interview with NPR, Clarke says the study looked at the dinosaurs’ closest cousins, birds and crocodilians, to help study their vocal behavior.

“We have 10,000 species today. Most of them vocalize, sing with an open mouth. But some birds produce sound with a closed mouth. They actually inflate different structures that allow them to resonate, often at lower frequencies than many other birds. But we also needed to look at alligators and crocodiles as the closest cousins to dinosaurs,” Clarke said in the interview with NPR.

Clarke said she plans to continue the study and hopes to discover how the dinosaurs’ quacks eventually transitioned into the bird’s song that we hear today. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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