ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Diggin' For Dinosaurs - LA County Natural History Museum

Updated on March 30, 2010

Ringing the dinosaur skeletons are text labels and beautiful color illustrations describing the people behind the project, the natural history of the two animals, and other forms of life at the end of the Cretaceous. From here, enter the Dinosaur Hall just beyond the foyer to see more dinosaurs. You'll first walk through a marine exhibit complete with the sound of surf. A 30-foot plesiosaur (the bright yellow label cautions you that this is "NOT a dinosaur") is mounted here, along with a giant pterosaur (also not a dinosaur), and some really huge clam and oyster fossils. A geological chart orients you in time before entering the next hall, which announces its all-star cast with a red neon sign proclaiming, "Dinosaurs!"

Highlights of the hall include a cast of the complete skeleton of a Mamenchisaurus from China, the longest-necked dinosaur ever discovered, some very realistic, life-sized models of Allosaurus and Carnotaurus, and real fossil skulls of Triceratops and Tyrannosaurus. Big purple labels, looking a bit dated, give brief descriptions of each fossil animal and how it was collected. You might consider bringing an eight-year-old along to help with pronunciation, however, because the labels don't provide guidance with tongue-twisting scientific names.

The Carnotaurus model deserves special mention. Created by palaeontology artist Stephen Czerkas, this full-scale model took seven years to make and was the first sculpture created of this recently discovered dinosaur. It was an especially curious-looking creature, with ornamental studs on its skin and bull-like horns atop its head. A cast skeleton behind the sculpture, together with some model plants, complete the scene.

Many of the fossils are mounted as they would have appeared in the field or lab. A rare baby duckbill, Edmontosaurus, is partially encased in plaster, its head twisted around in a death pose. Another larger duckbilled dinosaur is displayed with an impression of its horny beak, a feature not usually fossilized. A changing exhibit displays a fossil skeleton in a protective field jacket and shows how fossils are received and prepared in a working palaeontology lab.

There are some other inventive mounts here. A cast of Armargasaurus, a member of the sauropod group, is laid out on the ground in all its 50-foot glory. Except, as the text label points out, there's something missing. Visitors are left to figure it out for themselves, but it's not hard to guess that the creature is sans skull, a common condition of fossils from this small-headed group.

If you like primal scenes, you can find another pair of fighting fossil skeletons, this time Allosaurus and Camptosaurus locked in staged battle, with a razor-toothed Allosaurus model posed nearby.

Everyone knows that Hollywood is the special effects capital of the world, but the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County is blissfully free of show biz. It's all dinosaurs all the time. It's great for the kids but the adults will love it just as much. On your next trip to La-La Land, don't miss the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County. It's really a great day of fun and education.

Continued in: Diggin' For Dinosaurs - George Page Museum

Back To Start


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)