Naked Scientist: Fossilised dinosaur eggs with preserved chicks a historic find

Paleontologists working in northwestern China have discovered hundreds of fossilised dinosaur eggs, some with preserved chicks still inside.

Each about 5cm long, the eggs were laid by a winged dinosaur species, known as a pterosaur.

42 of the specimens discovered by Xiaolin Wang and her colleagues at Beijing's Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology contain evidence of developing pterosaur chicks within.

Scientist Chris Smith explains why this is a historic discovery.

These are flying dinosaurs, they date from about 100 to 146 million years ago.

Chris Smith, The Naked Scientist

It is important to see the developing dinosaur chick because that tells you a lot about how developed it was when it was born, what sort of environment it would have grown up in, how dependent it would have been on parental care or whether or not these things were likely to live on their own or in a group.

Chris Smith, The Naked Scientist

Click on the link below to hear the Naked Scientist answer some science questions from listeners....


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