Mark Mancini

Mark Mancini

Contributing Writer

Mark Mancini is a freelance writer currently based in New Jersey. Over the years, he’s covered every subject from classic horror movies to Abe Lincoln's favorite jokes. He is particularly fond of paleontology and has been reporting on new developments in this field since 2013. When Mark's not at his writing desk, you can usually find him on stage somewhere because he loves to get involved with community theater. And if you ever feel like trading puns for a few hours, he's your guy.

Recent Contributions

The 1964 discovery of Deinonychus in southern Montana was groundbreaking for many reasons, mostly because it helped prove that birds are direct descendants of dinosaurs.

By Mark Mancini

Utahraptors lived around 135 million years ago in the late Cretaceous Period. So what does salt have to do with these massive dinosaurs whose fossils were first discovered in 1975?

By Mark Mancini

The villainous dinosaur from 'Jurassic Park' probably never had an affinity for water.

By Mark Mancini

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Triceratops — which literally means "three-horned face" — is one of the most spectacular and well-known of all dinosaurs. It shared the Cretaceous landscape with, and probably was preyed upon by, Tyrannosaurus rex.

By Mark Mancini

The green iguana isn't native to the Sunshine State. So how did this invasive lizard get there and become the state's menace to society?

By Mark Mancini

The Velociraptors in "Jurassic Park" were roughly the size of humans. In reality, they were about the size of an average turkey.

By Mark Mancini

Stegosaurus, an herbivorous dinosaur from 149 million years ago, walked on four legs, had a long, beak-tipped skull, a row of spikes adorning its tail and a pea-sized brain.

By Mark Mancini

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Tyrannosaurus rex was a giant predator that roamed the earth, so why did it have such tiny arms?

By Mark Mancini

Brachiosaurus has been portrayed in popular culture many times, but the representations of this mysterious dinosaur are largely based on another massive dino called Giraffatitan brancai.

By Mark Mancini

A full grown Allosaurus could be up to 34 feet long, stand 9 feet tall and weigh around 3 tons. This dino was a monster who, scientists suspect, would even eat his own kind.

By Mark Mancini

Tyrannosaurus rex, one of the fiercest meat-eaters ever, is the animal that probably springs to mind when most of us hear the word "dinosaur."

By Mark Mancini

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The elusive hagfish is a master at hiding in holes and crevices, but its main defense is its ability to release a noxious, suffocating and sometimes poisonous slime when attacked.

By Mark Mancini

Perhaps no other beast has been more wildly mischaracterized in popular culture than the crested predator Dilophosaurus.

By Mark Mancini

These super-frightening entelodonts (aka hell pigs) once patrolled throughout Eurasia, North America and Africa.

By Mark Mancini

Does your parakeet understand the cardinal chirping outside its window? Can a pigeon's noises mean anything to a crow? Yes, it can.

By Mark Mancini

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What benefit does one bird get from copying another bird's calls?

By Mark Mancini

The extinct Titanoboa snake lived around 66 million to 56 million years ago. These things were massive and could reach 50 feet long and 3 feet wide making them the largest snake ever to have roamed the Earth.

By Mark Mancini & Desiree Bowie

It's easy to mistake a crow for a raven or vice versa. But the two birds are actually pretty different.

By Mark Mancini

Known by the nickname "Mesozoic Cow," the African dinosaur Nigersaurus taqueti has also had its face compared to a vacuum cleaner.

By Mark Mancini

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Winding through the South Carolina low country, the Cooper River is a reed-lined haven for sportfish and shorebirds. The waterway originates in Berkeley County's Lake Moultrie. From there, it proceeds all the way down to Charleston, where it merges with the Ashley and the Wando to form that city's world-famous harbor. (Ever hear of Fort Sumter?)

By Mark Mancini

Yep, two small-bodied Russian tortoises made it to the moon and back before man did.

By Mark Mancini

Deep underneath Antarctica, there lies a hidden lake. Roughly the size of North America's Lake Ontario, the buried landmark has inspired curiosity and controversy for decades.

By Mark Mancini

Scientists are concerned that the Thwaites Glacier is melting at a rapid pace, though some don't love the name "Doomsday Glacier." What does the rapid melt of this huge glacier mean for the future of our planet?

By Mark Mancini

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Ice cubes usually look cloudy and opaque in the middle, despite the fact that water is clear. What's the deal?

By Mark Mancini

The oceans on planet Earth cycle through daily tidal changes. But the ground beneath our feet experiences tides of its own, too.

By Mark Mancini