A perfectly preserved dinosaur embryo has been discovered in a fossilised egg and it’s being hailed by experts.
The incredible discovery was made in Ganzhou, China, and is considered one of the most complete dinosaur embryos ever unearthed.
Fion Waisum Ma, author and PhD researcher at the University of Birmingham, said:
“Dinosaur embryos are some of the rarest fossils and most of them are incomplete with the bones dislocated.
“We are very excited about the discovery of Baby Yingliang – it is preserved in a great condition and helps us answer a lot of questions about dinosaur growth and reproduction with it.
“It is interesting to see this dinosaur embryo and a chicken embryo pose in a similar way inside the egg, which possibly indicates similar prehatching behaviours.”
Meet ‘Baby Yingliang’! Our experts examined the 72 million-year-old embryo found inside a fossilised dinosaur egg in southern China, shedding new light on the link between the behaviour of modern birds and dinosaurs @LES_UniBham @EdinburghUni https://t.co/IVA2Un22zb pic.twitter.com/ZY1LE8i3Es
— UniBirmingham News (@news_ub) December 21, 2021
University of Edinburgh’s Professor Steve Brusatte, who was part of the research team, said:
“This dinosaur embryo inside its egg is one of the most beautiful fossils I have ever seen.
“This little prenatal dinosaur looks just like a baby bird curled in its egg, which is yet more evidence that many features characteristic of today’s birds first evolved in their dinosaur ancestors.”
The embryo is thought to be between 72 to 66 million years old.