Thursday, April 11, 2013

Oldest Embryonic Dinosaur Bones Discovered

Scientists digging in China have discovered the earliest fossil embryos to date. The find includes
remains from many animals at different stages of development providing a unique opportunity to investigate the embryonic development of a prehistoric species.

the fossils were discovered in a bone bed in Lufeng County that dates to the Early Jurassic between 197 million to 190 million years ago.  The site contained more than 200 various bones as well as pieces of fossilized eggshells.

To put this discovery in perspective most of the dinosaur embryos on record are concentrated in the Late Cretaceous period.  This discovery  takes a detailed record of dinosaur embryology and pushes it back over 100 million years!

From the article:

  • But it is not just the age of the fossils that is notable, the researchers say. Spectroscopic analysis of bone-tissue samples from the Chinese nesting site revealed the oldest organic material ever seen in a terrestrial vertebrate.

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