A Spring Holiday Activity Idea – Making Dinosaur Chocolate Nests
Here’s a simple and fun recipe aimed at young dinosaur fans, a recipe to make dinosaur chocolate nests. This is a great activity for the Easter or spring holidays.
Dinosaur Chocolate Nests – What you Need
Ingredients – (makes a batch of about 8 to 10 dinosaur nests)
- Plain or Milk cooking Chocolate 225 grammes (8oz)
- Packet of Breakfast Cereal Cornflakes or Shredded Wheat variety
- Packet of Sugar Coated Mini-chocolate Eggs
- Pack of Small Cake Cases
How to Make the Dinosaur Chocolate Nests
1. Take the cooking chocolate out of its wrapper and snap it into small pieces into a heat-proof bowl. Then melt the chocolate over a pan of hot water (simmering). Putting the bowl in a microwave for 30 seconds (full power), will help to melt the chocolate if you are in a hurry and need to get the chocolate to melt more quickly.
2. Once melted remove from the heat (turn off the heat source) and give the chocolate a quick stir to ensure all the chocolate pieces have melted.
3. Put in the chosen breakfast cereal, a little at first then gradually add more until the chocolate/cereal mix takes on the appearance of twigs or wood in a nest.
4. Spoon enough of the chocolate/cereal mix into each of the cake cases, a table spoon is usually sufficient. Make a little indentation in the centre of each chocolate dinosaur next, this hollow is where the eggs will be placed.
5. Put two mini-chocolate eggs into the hollow formed at the centre of each nest. The chocolate being sticky, will ensure that the eggs stay in place. A pair of eggs per nest is all that is needed. Palaeontologists know that dinosaurs laid their eggs in twos (dinosaurs unlike birds had two ovipositors) – the egg laying apparatus of a dinosaur has been described as being like a “double barrelled shot-gun”.
Great for a Dinosaur Party – Dinosaur Chocolate Nests
Picture credit: Everything Dinosaur
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Some Facts about dinosaur eggs (for all young, budding palaeontologists)
A). Dinosaur eggs were not as large as many people think, the largest dinosaur eggs known to science are about the size of a soccer ball. Some of the biggest dinosaur eggs have been ascribed to a genus of huge, long-necked dinosaur (titanosaur), whose fossils have been found in France. This dinosaur is called Hypselosaurus (the name means “high ridged lizard”. Hypselosaurus was named and described back in 1869, from fossils found in Provence, however, scientists are unsure as to whether the genus name can be established based on such fragmentary fossil evidence. The genus is now termed a nomen dubium, palaeontologists have doubts about its validity.
B). Dinosaur eggs were lots of different shapes, some were very round, some oval shaped, some even quite pointy at one end. The shape of the egg tells scientists a little about the dinosaur that laid them. Something like forty different types of dinosaur egg have now been identified by scientists.
C). The classification of fossil eggs is referred to as ootaxa, dinosaur eggs are classified in virtually the same way as other organisms are classified using the classical Linnaean method (after the Swedish botanist Carl Linnaeus 1707-1778), there are oofamilies, oogenera and oospecies.
D). Some dinosaurs were very attentive parents, incubating the eggs and protecting the nest. When the eggs hatched the parents brought food to the nest for the baby dinosaurs.
E). The oldest dinosaur eggs that contain the fossils of baby dinosaurs inside them were found in China and a report published on them in 2013. These eggs are around 190 million years old.
Dinosaur Fossilised Eggs (Hypselosaurus)
Picture credit: Everything Dinosaur
Articles on dinosaur egg discoveries published by Everything Dinosaur: