Diner accidentally discovers dinosaur footprints at a restaurant in China

Diner accidentally discovers dinosaur footprints at a restaurant in China
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A diner sitting on the outdoor patio of a small restaurant in China’s Sichuan province looked down and saw something unusual. It appeared to be a dinosaur footprint.

Two weeks ago, Chinese paleontologists confirmed that the diner was right. In fact, the depressions had been left by two dinosaurs as they lumbered through the region some 100 million years ago.

Using a 3D scanner, the scientists determined that the footprints were made by sauropods — Large herbivorous dinosaurs with long necks and four legs. According to Lida Xing, a paleontologist at the China University of Geosciences who led the team that investigated the site, these footprints were likely made by the species. Titanosauriforms.

Discoveries shed new light on the day the dinosaurs died

The footprints are about 22 inches long on average, and the dinosaurs were likely about 26 feet long and weighed more than 2,000 pounds, Xing told The Washington Post.

While it doesn’t happen every day, the discovery of dinosaur footprints does happen occasionally in China, but not in urban settings.

“Sauropod tracks are not rare in the Sichuan Basin…but they are very rare.”[ly] found in downtown restaurants,” Xing said in an email. “Most of the time, the ground in the city is vegetation or cement.”

But this was not the first accidental discovery of dinosaur remains in recent years.

Take, for example, the case of Mark McMenamin, who was walking across the campus of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst last year. He and his wife collected stones at a construction site, then noticed that one of them appeared to be a fossil.

It was, in fact, the elbow bone of a 30-foot-long predatory dinosaur known as neotheropod. McMenamin, a geology professor at Mount Holyoke College in Massachusetts, estimated the Jurassic fossil to be between 145 and 200 million years old. news week informed.

Then there was the discovery of a well-preserved dinosaur “carcass,” unearthed by miners in Canada. While digging at Suncor’s Millennium mine in Alberta in 2011, they came across the fossilized remains of a nodosaurusa heavily armored creature dating to about 110 million years ago, according to National Geographic.

First displayed in 2017, it is considered one of the best-preserved dinosaur fossils ever found. The remains are so complete that scientists at the Royal Tyrrell Museum in Alberta were able to examine the contents of its stomach, including twigs, leaves, moss, pollen and spores.

Archaeologist Marie Woods was searching for clams on the beach in Yorkshire, England, last year when she spotted something unusual: the 165-million-year-old footprint of a species of theropod. A dinosaur similar to a tyrannosaurus rex, this ancient reptile also stood on two legs and was carnivorous. It was the largest footprint of its kind ever found in that part of England, reported the good news network.

“All I wanted to do was grab some seafood for my dinner and I ended up stumbling on this,” Woods told the website.

In 2011, paleontologists in China found a large rock with a fish fossil on the surface. They took him back to the lab, where he stayed for about a year, according to new scientist. So the researchers decided to open it.

To their astonishment, they discovered inside the remains of a mother ichthyosaur – a fish-like creature that swam the oceans during the Mesozoic Era 252 million to 66 million years ago – giving birth to three babies. One was already out of the womb, another was halfway there, and the third was waiting for his chance.

This fossil find altered the view of when dinosaurs began having live births, pushing back the historical record by nearly 250 million years. Ichthyosaurs, which evolved from land creatures, showed that dinosaurs had stopped laying eggs much earlier than previously believed.

“This terrestrial style of giving birth is only possible if they inherited it from their terrestrial ancestors,” said one of the researchers. living science. “They wouldn’t if live birth evolved in water.”

Back at the restaurant in Sichuan province, Xing and his team continue to study the accidental discovery of dinosaur footprints. The area where the sauropod tracks were noticed has been cordoned off so curious diners don’t accidentally damage it.

At first, the restaurant owner was anxious that news of the primordial find would impact her business that serves home-cooked meals based on local cuisine. However, she has since embraced the media hype.

“Initially, he was worried about attracting a lot of curious people and affecting the restaurant’s traditional patrons,” Xing wrote. “But now she understands the change and is ready to throw out some dinosaur footprint-themed treats.”

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