Feathered dinosaurs fossil found

Feathered dinosaurs fossil found

WASHINGTON - Agence France-Presse
Feathered dinosaurs fossil found

Scientists have unearthed the first fossils of a feathered dinosaur.

Scientists in Canada have unearthed the first fossils of a feathered dinosaur ever found in the Americas, the journal Science reported on Oct 25.

The 75 million year old fossil specimens, uncovered in the badlands of Alberta, Canada, include remains of a juvenile and two adult ostrich-like creatures known as ornithomimids.

Until now feathered dinosaurs have been found mostly in China and in Germany.

“This is a really exciting discovery, as it represents the first feathered dinosaur specimens found in the Western Hemisphere,” said Darla Zelenitsky, an assistant professor at the University of Calgary and lead author of the study. These specimens are also the first to reveal that ornithomimids were covered in feathers, like several other groups of theropod dinosaurs,” Zelenitsky said.

She said the find “suggests that all ornithomimid dinosaurs would have had feathers.” The creatures had a cameo screen appearance in Jurassic Park movie in which they were shown being chased by a Tyrannosaurus Rex.

Francois Therrien, curator at the Royal Tyrrell Museum in Drumheller, said the discovery revealed another fascinating fact, the existence of early wings in dinosaurs that were too big to fly.