From the doorknob-turning, toe-tapping velociraptors in "Jurassic Park" to the menacing Sharptooth and stubborn Cera in the "The Land Before Time," never before has a species inspired such imagination as the dinosaur. But there's much more to these creatures than what you'll find in the movies.
Originating some 230 million years ago, during the Mid- to Late-Triassic period, dinosaurs started out as small meat-eating creatures, eventually evolving into thousands of different species ranging from tiny carnivores the size of your lap dog to towering plant-eaters weighing more than 80 tons. Although other prehistoric stars such as pterodactyls and ichthyosaurs are often lumped in with the dinosaurs; dinosaurs, or "fearfully great lizards" in Greek, are defined as strictly-terrestrial reptiles, thus excluding groups like the soaring pterosaurs and amphibious plesiosaurs. They're also differentiated by a set of unique features, such as a jaw muscle extending to the roof of their skull, that are common only to dinosaurs.
These features were apparently pretty impressive too, because they enabled this most captivating of prehistoric creatures to dominate land for more than 160 million years. While researchers learn more about the mysterious beasts every day and are constantly uncovering new and interesting specimens, here we highlight 10 of the biggest, baddest and most interesting dinosaurs yet discovered. First up is a dino that doesn't look especially impressive, but just wait until you hear him sing.