Long-legged bird-like dinosaur fossil found in China.
According to CNN’s report, the dinosaur named “Fujianvenator prodigiosus”, meaning “strange Fucian hunter”, lived in what is now China’s Fucien province during the Late Jurassic Period (148-150 million years ago).
It was emphasized that the dinosaur in question had lower legs twice the length of their thighs, unlike most dinosaurs.
The lead author of the study, published in the journal Nature, is Professor of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology Institute in Beijing. Dr. Min Wang explained that the discovery of a pheasant-sized dinosaur weighing about 640 grams is important, and that the discovery fills the gap in the fossil record regarding the origin of birds.
“Given its unique skeletal form, Fujianvenator sheds new light on morphological evolution, the earliest evolutionary period of birds,” Min said. said.
Min said that although no feathers were found in the fossil, Fujianvenator was likely feathered like its closest relatives in the dinosaur family tree.
IT MAY BE A FAST RUNNING LIFE BUT ALSO LIVES NEAR MARKS
In the study, it was noted that the presence of a long lower leg in today’s animals in species that can run fast suggests that Fujianvenator may be a runner that can reach high speeds.
On the other hand, it was pointed out that Fujianvenator may have lived in a swamp or aquatic environment, as long legs are also seen in birds living near water such as storks and cranes today.
It was stated that the fossil was found together with fossils of other aquatic and amphibian animals, including turtles and light-finned fish, indicating that the dinosaur spent time in the swamps.
In the research, it was emphasized that other known early bird-like dinosaurs lived in trees and could fly by nature.
Birds are thought to have descended from two-legged “Theropod dinosaurs” (the group to which the Tyrannosaurus Rex (T-Rex) belongs) during the Jurassic period, but due to the relative scarcity of early evolutionary fossils, not much is known about it.