Exquisitely Preserved Embryo Found Inside Fossilized Dinosaur Egg

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A 72 million-year-old embryo has been found inside of a fossilized dinosaur egg in China.

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And the fascinating discovery allows for comparison between birds of our present and birds of our past.

Baby Yingliang, the embryo’s name, was found in the Cretaceous rocks of Ganzouh in Southern China.

And it’s an incredible discovery.

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Oviraptorosaur, the species in which Baby Yingliang is believed to be, is not so different to that of birds of today…

  via Shutterstock  

With their short beaks and parrot-like skulls, the species have been likened to birds of the present many times in the past. However, some people have disagreed with their likeness.

But, there has rarely been enough evidence to actually compare the present with the past, especially because, according to Fion Waisum Ma, a Ph.D. researcher at the University of Birmingham: “Dinosaur embryos are some of the rarest fossils and most of them are incomplete with the bones dislocated,” she said, as per Sky News.

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“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,” she continued.

The dinosaur was actually very close to hatching, too.

Now, according to the Daily Mail, when a modern bird is ready to hatch, it will position its head below its body, with its back curled, something which the central nervous system controls so that the bird can hatch successfully.

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And well, if you look closely at the photos of Yingliang, you’ll see that the embryo is in a similar position.

  via Shutterstock  

Which could give an answer to the evolution of hatching methods in modern birds today.

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The embryo was supposed to have hatched roughly 70 million years ago, as per the Daily Mail.

  via Shutterstock  

But, it seems as though paleontologists have had some incredible look in discovering such a well-preserved embryo inside a fossilized egg because now, they can begin to dig even deeper into unanswered questions.

And who doesn’t love being able to find out more about dinosaurs, right?

What do you think about the discovery of Baby Yingliang?

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