Ancient bird fossil found in China

August 19th, 2011 - 1:25 pm ICT by IANS  

Beijing, Aug 19 (IANS) A fossil of a bird dating back to seven million years was discovered in northwest China, Xinhua reported Friday.

It was the first intact bird fossil ever found in the Hezheng county, said Chen Shanqin, deputy curator of the Hezheng County Ancient Animal Fossils Museum.

The county in Gansu province is located at the convergence of the Qinghai-Tibet plateau and the Loess plateau.

The fossil features a struggling bird with its wings fully stretched, Chen said Friday.

Judging from the stratum where it was buried, the fossil could date back more than seven million years, Chen said.

However, further study is needed to identify the specie, he added.

Archeologists have found over 30,000 ancient animal fossils in the county and neighbouring areas, including those of the primitive three-toed horse, the platybelodon, which is known as a shovel tusker, and a woolly rhino, which dates back to 2.5 million to 30 million years.

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