Dinosaurs don’t roar. Original audio records of real dinosaurs are surprisingly hard to get. No one knows what dinosaurs sounded like because there’s no audio recording equipment that survived the past 66 million years, and most people who lived back then are already dead (this was a joke).
Paleontologists can make an educated guess, though. And the typical roar we often see in dinosaur movies is just fiction – because dinosaurs have no vocal cords as humans do. They communicate by way of body language, and by making primitive noises. So what sound does a dinosaur make?
The sound a dinosaur makes depends on the type of dinosaur.
Not all dinosaurs are big and terrifying, some were tiny and harmless.
This is what sound a dinosaur makes.
How do we know?
Dinosaurs are reptiles and evolved from archosaurs, and some dinosaurs evolved into birds. That makes it almost certain that dinosaurs sound like crocodiles, birds, or a mix of both. It’s unclear if nonavian dinosaurs had a syrinx, a vocal organ birds use to tweet and sing. Crocodiles and alligators, the closest living relatives of dinosaurs, lack a syrinx, which makes it likely that most nonavian dinosaurs had no syrinx.
The oldest known syrinx was discovered in a duck fossil in a 69 to 66-million-year-old rock in the Antarctica. Theropods, a group of dinosaurs with hollow bones, three toes, and claws on each limb, evolved into birds.
These birdlike dinosaurs probably made primitive bird sounds but were unable to sing or tweet like many modern birds. All other dinosaurs must sound similar to crocodiles, just louder because of their size.