A New Raptor Fossil Discovered in China

You know how the new Jurassic World film was pretty much all about the raptors in the movie? What’s not to like? They’re pretty charismatic on screen, and Blue had some awesome coloration.

Chinese raptor fossil found in Liaoning Province

Well, if you like dinosaurs, be prepared to become stoked about a real one; this new find in China of a raptor has been named the Zhenyuanlong suni. This type of raptor lived around 125 million years ago during the Early Cretaceous era.
The fossil was unearthed in the Liaoning Province, by a man named Sun Zhenyuan, who helped to get the fossil to the researchers for study. This is why fossil was named after him.

What do we know about the new raptor fossil thus far?

The research conducted on the fossil was made available today in Scientific Reports. The report was filed last year in November before it was accepted in April, then published today. There are two authors on this study; Junchang Lü and Stephen L. Brusatte.
Like many of the dinosaur fossils found in this region, this raptor is the relative of the Velociraptor we all have come to know from the Jurassic Park franchise. But it is also a feathered one as well, evident by the fossilized feathers, and research suggest it is closely related to birds given the anatomy structure of the fossil. The fossil is almost a full body skeleton.

raptor had wings?

The raptor fossil shows that it has probably around the height of a human and short appendages that looked like wings but probably couldn’t fly. There has been some joking or commentary that it basically looks like a human sized chicken or turkey, which is slightly scary if you have ever had to deal with aggressive poultry before.
One of the authors thought it was interesting to see the raptor fossil have winglike appendages without the actual intent of flying. The question then became why this dinosaur has wings, why has it evolved to have these in the first place. Other questions such as what its behavioral characteristics were begin to come to mind as well.
Only further research can be done to find out more about the fossil. That, and finding more similar fossils for further study.


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