Buddy, a curious, funny, and intelligent T-Rex is the star of the show. He is cautious, but always ready to jump into action and start asking questions. While on the Dinosaur Train, Buddy makes a hypothesis and begins searching for the answers to his questions with the help of his Mom, the Conductor, and the new dinosaurs he meets on the train. When Buddy isn’t taking exciting trips on the Dinosaur Train, he is playing with his siblings, Don, Tiny, and Shiny and anticipating their next adventure.
Tiny, who loves to make rhymes, is quite clever and very brave. Tiny approaches every dinosaur she meets with the confidence of a news reporter trying to get the full scoop. Tiny is so brave that she often wanders a little bit too far; but, Buddy is always there to help her get back on the right track. And in return, Tiny is fiercely protective of her brother Buddy. Tiny also has two Pteranodon siblings: Don and Shiny.
Shiny is more “girly” than Tiny and proud of her shiny exterior, but can become shy in social situations. Shiny is outgoing with her siblings and acts as if she is the “wisest.” She can be a bit of a show-off and loves role playing with her brothers and sister. Shiny is happiest at home in Pteranodon Terrace hanging out with Dad and Don, while her Mom, Buddy, and Tiny take trips on the Dinosaur Train.
Don is a sweet, mellow little Pteranodon. Although he has a goofy streak, he is steady as a rock and very focused on the task at hand. Don is loyal to all his siblings and graciously waits his turn. Once his mind is made up, though, Don goes enthusiastically head-first into every challenge.
Mrs. Pteranodon: teacher, companion, and tour guide extraordinaire. But, first and foremost, she is “Mom” to Buddy, Don, Tiny, and Shiny. She is always there to listen to Buddy’s questions about being an adopted member of the Pteranodon family. Mrs. Pteranodon is intent on a good education, but she is also always looking for ways to let her kids explore their world.
The kids’ devoted, hands-on “sports dad,” Mr. Pteranodon loves to approach parenting like coaching a team. He can even make a squawk that sounds like a whistle when he needs to call “time out!” He exhorts his kids to work together towards their goals, often calling out, “Go Team Pteranodon!” He is fun, can be a little silly, and encourages the kids to “be adventurous.”
The Conductor is a Troodon and a special friend to Buddy and his family. He becomes one of Buddy’s heroes because he is the Conductor of one the most awesome trains of all, the Dinosaur Train! The Conductor is very intelligent and is happy to explain facts about dinosaurs, the places they visit and even how the Dinosaur Train works.
Dr. Scott – Paleontologist
“Scott Sampson is a Canadian dinosaur paleontologist who received his Ph.D. in Zoology from the University of Toronto. Sampson is the paleontology consultant on Dinosaur Train and is featured in the live action segments on the show. His doctoral work examined the evolution of horned dinosaurs from western North America. Following graduation in 1993, Sampson spent a year working at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City, followed by five years as assistant professor of anatomy at the New York College of Osteopathic Medicine on Long Island. From 1999-2007, he held a dual position with the Utah Museum of Natural History and the Department of Geology and Geophysics at the University of Utah, serving for the last several years of that period as chief curator and associate professor, respectively. His research has focused on the ecology and evolution of Late Cretaceous dinosaurs, and he has conducted fieldwork in a number of countries, including Kenya, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Madagascar, Mexico, the United States, and Canada. His current research efforts are focused on a large scale project in Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, southern Utah, which has yielded abundant remains of a previously unknown dinosaur fauna. Sampson has published numerous scientific and popular articles, and has lectured extensively to audiences of all ages on dinosaurs.
In 2007, Sampson moved to the San Francisco Bay Area of California. Although retaining a formal research affiliation with the University of Utah, he is now pursuing a range of new projects focused on education. Sampson was the primary scientific consultant and on-air host of a four-part Discovery Channel series called “”Dinosaur Planet.”” He recently completed a book, “”Dinosaur Odyssey: Fossil Threads in the Web of Life”” (University of California Press, 2009), which will be the first comprehensive review of dinosaur paleontology for a general audience in more than two decades. In the summer of 2009, he traveled to Australia as one of four international scientists chosen to participate in National Science Week, an annual festival aimed at promoting science. Sampson is now at work on another general audience book, this one arguing for radical reform of science education as a key factor in resolving the current sustainability crisis.”