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'Mud Dragon': New Dinosaur Species Discovered in Southern China via Dynamite

Nov 12, 2016 05:07 AM EST
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According to Dr. Dave Hone a lecturer from Queen Mary, University of London, the interest in dinosaurs is remains important for the scientific community. In an article published by The Guardian, he argues that young people are usually introduced to the scientific process because of their natural affinity towards dinosaurs. They are substantial educational tools that makes is easy for children to see themselves pursuing a career in science.

Moreover, dinosaurs were a staple in the planet for a very long time. Their remnants piece together a history of the planet - during a period in which humans have not existed yet. It provides research opportunities well beyond the scope of paleontological studies.

People who are interested in dinosaurs are rather fortunate as more and more fossils and evidence of their existence are discovered. In fact just earlier this week, Chinese builders unraveled a well-preserved dinosaur fossil that turned out to be the first specimen of its kind.

A report from NPR details the discovery of Tongtianlong lismus in southern China. Chinese construction workers used dynamite in order to get access to the bed rock in preparation for the school they are building. The explosion uncovered the dinosaur whose name translates to "muddy dragon on the road to heaven."

According to Stephen Brusatte, palaeontologist from the University of Edinburgh, the discovery was a particularly close call. The builders' dynamite could've easily blown the specimen to bits.

"Thankfully there were workmen using dynamite that day, and thankfully they put that dynamite at the perfect place so that it revealed instead of destroyed the fossil" explained Brusatte.

He further reveals that the recently discovered reptile met his death in a particularly gruesome fashion, "Its head is sticking up, its neck is arched, its arms are both sticking out to the side like it's trying to free itself"

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