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120-Million-Year-Old Dinosaur Fossil Sheds Light on Bird Evolution

Scientists have just discovered a 120-million-year-old fossil that could help us learn more about landbound dinosaurs and their evolution into flying birds.

The Cratonavis Zhui bird was revealed to have a dinosaur-like head and a body similar to that of today's birds.

This bird originated from the northeast region of China. CT scans found its skull to be nearly identical to that of a theropod dinosaur, similar to the Tyrannosaurus Rex. The Chinese Academy of Sciences reports that the Cratonavis skull had not evolved its mobile upper jaw like other birds.

The Cratonavis had an elongated shoulder blade and a large toe bone. The bird's foot bones have continued to evolve. This dinosaur-headed bird hunted small creatures but was still able to attack and consume any insects it came across.

Overall, it can be said that when you see a bird, the probability of it being an ancestor of a dinosaur is high.

[Source: Sciencen News]

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