A team of archeologists uncovered a new species of feathered dinosaur in China. The specimen is unique and offers a glimpse into the past of our planet and how it looked almost 120 million years ago.
The fossil features feathers and bones that contain a large amount of data about how dinosaurs evolved and differentiated themselves from birds. It has been compared to a large selection of feathered animals that have a close relationship to the origin of birds, according to one of the researchers who contributed to a study.
Specimens like this can show the surprising twists and turns taken by ancient life while also justifying the appearance of some characteristics that puzzled researchers for a long time. The new species has been named Wulong bohaiensis, which means dancing dragon in Chinese.
Scientists found a new feathered dinosaur species in China
The fossil was discovered more than a decade ago by a Chinese farmer in the Jehol Province, an area that has provided a steady stream of fossils in the past. It was transported and stored in the collection of The Dalian Natural History Museum in Liaoning, a province situated in the northern part of China, near the borders with North Korea and the Yellow Sea.
It is more significant than a common crow but not as large as a raven. A long bony tail may have boosted the size of the creature while sharp teeth were used to consume food. The bones are lightweight and small, and feathers were spread across the body, including on what appears to be a wing-lie array on both arms and legs. Two long plumes can be observed near the end of the tail.
Researchers believe that the new dinosaurs could be one of the early relatives of the Velociraptor, who lived approximately 75 million years ago. More information can be found in an in-depth study that was published in a scientific journal.