Tuesday, Oct 25th

Last update05:20:13 AM GMT

You are here News Science Stunning fossil eggs provide insight on ancient flying reptiles

Stunning fossil eggs provide insight on ancient flying reptiles

pterosaursA spectacular fossil find in China - a prehistoric egg extravaganza from 120 million years ago - is providing unique insight into the lifestyle and gender differences of pterosaurs, the flying reptiles that lived alongside the dinosaurs.

Until now, only four pterosaur eggs had ever been found, and all were flattened during the process of fossilization.

But Chinese scientists said on Thursday they had unearthed five pterosaur eggs preserved beautifully in three dimensions at a site in northwestern China that also includes no fewer than 40 adult individuals of a newly identified species that lived in a bustling colony near a large freshwater lake.

"This is definitely the most important pterosaur site ever found," said paleontologist Zhonghe Zhou, director of the Chinese Academy of Sciences' Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology.

The creature, Hamipterus tianshanensis, had a crest atop its elongated skull, pointy teeth for catching fish and a wingspan of more than 11 feet (3.5 meters).

The five oblong eggs were "pliable" with a thin, hard outer layer marked by "cracking and crazing" covering a thick membrane inner layer, making them resemble the soft eggs of some modern snakes and lizards, said paleontologist Xiaolin Wang, another of the researchers.

"They are the best-preserved pterosaur eggs ever found," Wang said.


Most Recent Related Stories...

European spacecraft goes silent minute before difficult Mars landing

European space craft goes silentThe “Mars Curse” may have claimed another victim.Europe’s Schiaparelli lander, scheduled to settle into the Martian...

The ExoMars Spacecraft Approaches the Red Planet

ExoMars SpacecraftThe European-Russian ExoMars spacecraft will release a lander onSunday. Both spacecraft and lander will arrive at...

Scientists discover physical source of depression

physical source of depression discoveredAn international research team says they have identified the physical source of depression in the brain...

The Universe has two trillion more galaxies than astronomers thought

universe has two million more galaxiesThere are a dizzying two trillion galaxies in the Universe, up to 20 times more than...
America's # 1 Enemy
Tee Shirt
& Help Support!
TVNL Tee Shirt
Conserve our Planet
& Help Support!
Get your 9/11 & Media
Deception Dollars
& Help Support!
The Loaded Deck
The First & the Best!
The Media & Bush Admin Exposed!