A fossil of a new species of dinosaur-era bird found in China is one of the oldest ever discovered, experts say in a new study.
The new bird, called Eoconfuciusornis zhengi, or “the dawn of the Confucius bird,” is predated only by the 150-million-year-old Archaeopteryx, which lived during the Jurassic period.
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Chinese and British paleontologists discovered the well-preserved fossil along a forested lakeside in the country’s northern Hebei Province.
“Eoconfuciusornis provides a new piece in the puzzle of the evolution from Archaeopteryx to more advanced birds,” said study co-author Zhou Zhonghe, executive director of the Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology in Beijing.
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