Paleo-Knowledge Bowl Sample Questions

Teams of 3 contestants each from schools throughout the region compete in the Paleo-Knowledge Bowl’s 3 rounds of questions on paleontology, and especially about dinosaurs. Here are some actual questions. How would you have done? (Answers below.)

Question 1. Which one of these dinosaur names means “two horned face”?

a. Pentaceratops

b. Diceratops

c. Protoceratops

d. Dilophosaurus

Question 2. Which Yale paleontologist first suggested that birds are the descendants of small meat-eating dinosaurs like Deinonychus?


a. O.C. Marsh
b. R.S. Lull
c. J.H. Ostrom
d. J.A. Gauthier

Question 3. The largest mass extinction event in Earth’s history occurred at the end of which geologic time division?


a. Mesozoic Era
b. Permian Period
c. Cambrian Period
d. Pleistocene Epoch

Question 4. Which highly-acclaimed British sculptor and illustrator created the first ever dinosaur restorations for the famous Crystal Palace about a decade after he had done the drawings for Darwin’s report on the reptiles collected during the voyage of the Beagle?


a. Charles Knight
b. Benjamin Waterhouse Hawkins
c. Beatrix Potter
d. Rudolph Zallinger

Question 5. Paleontologists have recently extracted ink from the ink sac of a spectacularly preserved approximately 150 million year old fossil squid specimen. The spectacular preservation of this specimen is thought to have been the result of a geologically instantaneous kind of fossilization called what?


a. The Medusa Effect
b. The Cyclops Effect
c. The Gaia Hypothesis
d. The Poseidon Adventure




Question 1. (b) Diceratops

Question 2. (c) J.H. Ostrom


Question 3. (b) Permian Period

Question 4. (b) Benjamin Waterhouse Hawkins

Question 5. (a) The Medusa Effect

Illustration © by Armand Morgan. All rights reserved.