In 1993, a team of paleontologists unearthed a fossil record, dating back 90 million years . It consisted of an egg with an incredible size of 60 centimeters. Later studies allowed it to be identified as a new species of dinosaur, called Beibeilong sinensis or “baby dragon of China”, nicknamed Baby Louie, but now its identity has finally been revealed.
Identity of ‘baby dragon’ egg found more than 20 years ago revealed
After an investigation that began as a result of the discovery almost 30 years ago, the author of this work Darla Zelenitsky , has explained that the species, belonging to the genus of oviraptosaurs, was similar to some modern birds, such as cassowaries and ostriches. . The substantial difference is that this species had colossal dimensions in comparison, being able to reach 8 meters in length, with a weight of more than 3 tons . These dimensions make it very different from its group to which it belongs, whose copies were very small.
When it was discovered, the ‘dragon’ egg was analyzed in depth and in a 1996 article it was generically identified as Macroelongatollithus . But now, thanks to these new data, it was possible to classify the species in the Terizinosaur family, dinosaurs known for their large size and the main suspects for laying such massive eggs.
Scholars, however, were skeptical about this, thinking it was an oviraptor but, as Zelenitsky states, ‘the only problem is that those eggs were really too big, eight to ten times the size of any known oviraptor! « .
The doubts began to be resolved in 2007, when, also in China, a skeleton belonging to a species of giant oviraptor , called Gigantoraptor, was discovered. “ At that moment everything fell into place. We had a giant species capable of laying these giant eggs , ”confirms Zelenitsky.
In 2013, the Baby Louie fossil , as National Geographic called it, was repurchased in China and subjected to further studies . From these analyzes it is clear that the animal certainly represented a new species of dinosaur and that it was part of a group of enormous dimensions, which built nests and carried out parental care for the unborn.
But this is not the only important finding regarding this “dragon” egg. Recently, Utah State University’s Ken Carpenter team has made more finds in Utah , unearthing several giant eggs, dating back 100 million years . This umpteenth discovery would allow us to track the movements of these impressive species, developed in different areas of the earth and then merged in Asian regions.