Long-necked, herbivorous dinosaurs embryo offers insights
The embryos of a long-necked, herbivorous dinosaur are the earliest ever recorded for any terrestrial vertebrate and point to how primitive dinosaurs evolved into the largest animals ever to walk on earth, say scientists from the University of Toronto at Mississauga (UTM), the Smithsonian Institution and the University of Witwatersrand, South Africa.
The discovery, published in the July 29 issue of Science, provides a rare glimpse into the life of the sauropodomorph dinosaur Massospondylus, an early dinosaur that grew to five metres and was relatively common in South Africa. The 190 million year-old embryos are from the beginning of the Jurassic Period, known as the age of dinosaurs. While the delicate bones of most dinosaur embryos were destroyed over time these embryos are represented by well preserved skeletons, one nicely curled up inside the egg.
Karen Kelly | EurekAlert!
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