Dino fossils from China visiting Ohio

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Dinosaur fossils, including a rib longer than 9 feet from a species of the titanosaur family, are making their North American debut at the Cincinnati Museum Center - and giving visitors a sneak peek at a larger exhibition with plans for a tour.

The five fossils in the preview exhibit date from 144million to 100million years ago, according to officials at the center.

Four of the fossils are among at least a dozen found from 2005 to 2007 in the Henan province of China.

The rib and three vertebrae came from a titanosaur that paleontologists think measured 30 feet in height and close to 100 feet in length, and probably weighed 32 to 87 tons.

After the fossils were identified, researchers found that villagers in the region had dug dinosaur bones for centuries, seeing them as dragon bones and grinding them for use as medicine.

"Henan could become the largest dinosaur field in China," said Daoping Bao, president and CEO of Dinosaurs Unearthed Corp., a dinosaur-exhibition company in Canada.

Discovery of the fossils from the titanosaur family, named after the mythological Titans from ancient Greece, was important to China and to the field of paleontology, said officials with the museum and Dinosaurs Unearthed.

"It enabled identification of a new species of titanosaur," said Glenn Storrs, curator of vertebrate paleontology at the museum.

The exhibit includes a fossilized nest of eggs laid by an unknown species of the beaked, feathered oviraptorosaur. The attraction measures more than 5feet in diameter and contains 26 eggs averaging a foot or more in length and laid in pairs around the edge of the round nest.

The nest, Storrs said, shows that the eggs were laid in a manner similar to bird eggs today.

"It is another addition to the broad amount of evidence linking living birds with extinct dinosaurs," he said.

The entire collection of fossils from Henan has been displayed only in a museum there, although two of the fossils were shown briefly in Japan.

The abbreviated Cincinnati exhibit will continue through mid-October, when the collection will be included in a larger exhibition to begin touring the United States and Canada.

Source from Great Site : http://www.dispatch.com

Dinosaur fossils


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