One of Velociraptor's cousins had an armful of feathers, even if its arms were short, a new study finds. The newly discovered species, uncovered by farmers in China, lived during the Cretaceous period about 125 million years ago. Its anatomy, including its short arms, indicates that the dinosaur probably couldn't fly, but its feathers will help researchers learn about the plumage of dinosaurs. [Read the full story about Velociraptor's feathered cousin]

Exquisite fossil

 

The preserved skeleton of feathered, short-armed dinosaur, Zhenyuanlong suni. (Image credit: Junchang Lü.)


Feathered dino

 

An artist's interpretation of the newfound species of dinosaur, Zhenyuanlong suni. Like Velociraptor, it had sharp claws and teeth. (Image Credit: Chuang Zhao.) 


Arm plumage

 

This photo shows a close-up of the wing feathers on Zhenyuanlong suni. (Image credit: Junchang Lü.)


Feathers galore

 

A detailed photo showing the wing feathers on the dinosaur's other arm. (Image credit: Junchang Lü.)


Skull and bones

 

The skull indicates that Zhenyuanlong suni had a relatively large brain. Its pointed teeth suggest that it fed on small mammals, reptiles and other dinosaurs. 

"It would have been a pretty formidable," said study co-researcher Steve Brusatte, a paleontologist at the University of Edinburgh. (Image credit: Junchang Lü and Stephen Brusatte, Scientific Reports 2015.)


Dino geeks

 

Steve Brusatte (left) and Junchang Lü (right), a professor at the Chinese Academy of Geological Sciences in Beijing, stand next to the fossil of the feathered dinosaur. (Image credit: Martin Kundrat.)

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