Fossilized egg contains a fully intact dinosaur embryo that was discovered.

An extremely rare, completely articulated dinosaur embryo was discovered inside a fossilized egg that had been accumulating dust in a museum storage space in China for more than ten years. The fetal specimen, estimated to be between 66 and 72 million years old, indicates a remarkable connection between dinosaurs and contemporary birds.

The unhatched species, an oviraptorosaur, is thought to be around 27 centimeters (10.6 inches) long and is the first instance of a dinosaur embryo exhibiting a position similar to modern bird embryos. Oviraptorosaurs are a group of feathered, toothless theropods. Modern birds perform a sequence of tucking motions just before hatching that entail bending their bodies and putting their heads beneath their wings, but the evolutionary roots of this behavior were unclear until recently.

The Baby Yingliang specimen’s head was discovered ventral to the body, with the feet on each side, and the back coiled around the blunt pole of the egg, according to the study’s authors, who report their discovery in the journal iScience. Previously unknown in a non-avian dinosaur, they claim that this stance is “reminiscent of a late-stage contemporary bird embryo.”

The oviraptorosaur embryo known as Baby Yingliang. Image: Xing et al., 2021

Birds are believed to tuck throughout the hatching process, and those who do not do so are significantly less likely to survive their departure from the egg. The fact that Baby Yingliang appears to have adopted the same position raises the possibility that the phenomena originated with the theropod ancestors of current birds.

In response to this exciting finding, research author Professor Steve Brusatte said, “This small pregnant dinosaur looks precisely like a young bird wrapped in its egg, which is still more proof that many traits characteristic of today’s birds initially originated in their dinosaur relatives.”

This image released by the University of Toronto shows field crew and volunteers working at the Dawa embryonic bonebed site near the city of Lufeng, in Yunnan, China. An international team of scientists discovered a cache of dinosaur embryos estimated to be 190 million years old, the fossilized bones are among the oldest dinosaur embryos in the world. (AP Photo/University of Toronto, R. Reisz)

Baby Yingliang, which is kept in the Yingliang Stone Nature History Museum, is one of the most complete dinosaur embryos ever discovered, giving scientists a unique opportunity to study an unharmed young theropod. The authors of the study acknowledge that no definite conclusions about the nature of dinosaur embryos can be taken from their observations because this fossil is the sole one of its kind; further research will be required before any ideas can be validated.

Reconstruction of a close-to-hatching oviraptorosaur dinosaur embryo, based on the new specimen “Baby Yingliang”. Image credit: Lida Xing

However, they come at the following conclusion: “This new remarkable fossil embryo implies that several early developmental characteristics (tucking) generally assumed to be exclusively avian may be anchored more deeply in the theropod lineage.”

Related Posts

Breaking News: Unearthed and Untouched – The Only Intact Egyptian Pharaoh’s Tomb

Vi𝚛t𝚞𝚊ll𝚢 𝚞nkn𝚘wn, th𝚎 𝚍isc𝚘v𝚎𝚛𝚢 𝚘𝚏 th𝚛𝚎𝚎 int𝚊ct E𝚐𝚢𝚙ti𝚊n Ph𝚊𝚛𝚊𝚘h’s t𝚘m𝚋s 𝚛iv𝚊ls Kin𝚐 T𝚞t’s 𝚍isc𝚘v𝚎𝚛𝚢. This is th𝚎 st𝚘𝚛𝚢 𝚘𝚏 th𝚎 𝚐𝚘l𝚍 𝚘𝚏 th𝚎 Ph𝚊𝚛𝚊𝚘hs 𝚊n𝚍 th𝚎 T𝚛𝚎𝚊s𝚞𝚛𝚎 𝚘𝚏 T𝚊nis. Th𝚎 t𝚘m𝚋 𝚘𝚏 T𝚞t𝚊nkh𝚊m𝚞n is 𝚘n𝚎 𝚘𝚏 th𝚎 m𝚘st 𝚏𝚊scin𝚊tin𝚐 𝚍isc𝚘v𝚎𝚛i𝚎s 𝚎v𝚎𝚛 m𝚊𝚍𝚎, …

Read more

The Ancient Bridge of Girsu/Tello: Unraveling the Mysteries of a Temple, Dam, or Water Regulator in the Sumerian City

Four millennia ago, the ancient Sumerian city of Girsu was home to 15,000 people, making it one of the earliest known cities. Sebastien Rey, leader of the British Museum team excavating the ancient site, believes that it was “the cradle of civilisation …

Read more

Farmer Discovers Large ‘Dinosaur Egg’ But Unveils Surprising Contents Inside

Follow the Farmer’s Journey as he Unveils the Astonishing Truth Behind the Enigmatic Shell! In a quiet place called deep, there was a farmer named Mateo Suarez. You would think that Carlos Spegazzini is a name and not a place, but it’s not like that. …

Read more

‘Black Beauty’: One of the Most Intact T. Rex Skeletons, Featuring a Classic ‘Death Pose’ and Unique Mineral Exposure

In the realm of paleontology, discoveries often transcend mere scientific findings—they unveil stories of ancient worlds, offering glimpses into the lives of creatures long gone. Recently, the excavation of a remarkably preserved Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton …

Read more

The “Hologram” Effect Ring Found in the Tomb of 1st Century AD Noblewoman, Aebutia Quarta

**A 2000-year-old ‘hologram’ enclosed in a gold jewel ** The ring of Titus Carvilius Gemello was found on the finger of a Roman matron, the noble Aebutia Quarta, in the so-called Flavio-Trajanic tomb – now known as the “Hypogeum of Garlands” – was discovered …

Read more

Curious Historical Anecdote: Unusual Incident by a Statue in 15th Century Cologne

Few men are memorialized in such a contradictory manner as Konrad von Hochstaden. Surely a man who laid the cornerstone of one of Europe’s greatest churches—The Cologne cathedral—should be remembered fondly. And he is…sometimes. (See the mosaic below.) …

Read more

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *