First feathered dinosaur tail found in amber
PALAEONTOLOGY In a market in Myanmar, Chinese scientist Lida Xing in 2015 accidentally discovered a unique lump of amber the size of a dried apricot. The lump turned out to include the tail of a 99-million-year-old dinosaur – probably a young coelurosaur, which was not much bigger than a sparrow. By means of CT scans and microscopy, scientists have been able to take a closer look at the about 3.5- cm-long tail which, apart from unmistakable feathers, includes both bones and soft tissue.
Scientists are thrilled, as this is the first time that they have been able to observe wellpreserved feathers in a dino. The discovery can provide us with more knowledge of the evolution of feathered dinos.
The well-preserved feathers in the amber probably come from a small coelurosaur dinosaur.