Prehistoric Voice Box Reveals Dinosaur-Era Sounds

The oldest known squawk box has just been found, and it suggests that dinosaurs were noisy but didn't sing or roar.

Published On 10/12/2016
1:49 PM EDT
A reconstruction of Vega Island, Antarctica, shows Vegavis iaai flying overhead (sound-producing syrinx visible) and a medium-sized meat-eating dinosaur below that's producing noise with a closed mouth. | Nicole Fuller/Sayo Art for UT Austin
A detailed look at the newly found syrinx, aka squawk box | J. Clarke/UT Austin
The syrinx is from an extinct species related to ducks from Antarctica. Within dinosaurs there was a transition from a vocal organ present in the larynx (seen in crocodiles) to one developed where the windpipe branches towards the lungs in birds. | Nicole Fuller/Sayo Art for UT Austin