• Question: How do you bring dinosaurs to life?

    Asked by ClassHimid to Michael S on 22 Mar 2024.
    • Photo: Michael Schubert

      Michael Schubert answered on 22 Mar 2024:

      Right now, we can’t do that! There are people interested in something called “de-extinction,” which hopes to bring back creatures that have died out. The problem is that you usually need either a very close living relative or very good DNA samples to do this well (or both!) – and we don’t have either of those things for dinosaurs.

      DNA degrades over time and the dinosaurs have been extinct for so long that we don’t have very good DNA samples for them. And, because they don’t have very close living relatives, we don’t have any similar DNA we can use to “fill in the gaps.” Even if we did try, we would probably end up with something that didn’t look much like a dinosaur!

      Who knows – maybe one day we’ll be able to work out what dinosaur DNA looked like and use cloning to bring them back. Right now, unfortunately, the science isn’t there yet!