New Dinosaur Alert! 90-Million-Year-Old Dinosaur Fossil ‘Baby Louie’ Identified As Beibeilong Sinensis

First Posted: May 11, 2017 05:50 AM EDT

A mysterious 90-million-year-old fossil of a dinosaur fetus that was found in China more than 25 years ago has been formally recognized as a new species of oviraptorosaur. The feathered dinosaur species has been officially named as Beibeilong sinensis, meaning “baby dragon from China.”

According to a BBC News report, the fossilized fetus that was referred to as Baby Louie was discovered in a nest of dinosaur eggs in the 1990s. The research team of paleontologists said that this is the first known specimen of an enormous bird-like dinosaur that belongs to the oviraptorosaur group. What made this particular fossil particularly interesting is the fact that the fetus or baby dinosaur was caught at the very moment it was hatching.

"For many years it was a mystery as to what kind of dinosaur laid these enormous eggs and nests," University of Calgary Professor Dr. Darla Zelenitsky said, as reported by The Telegraph. "Thanks to this fossil, we now know that these eggs were laid by a gigantic oviraptorosaur, a dinosaur that would have looked a lot like an overgrown cassowary.”

The expert also added that some people had initially thought that the eggs were those of a tyrannosaur. Tyrannosaur-like large theropod fossils were unearthed in the same area where Baby Louie was found -- in the rocks in China’s Henan province. In fact, thousands of dinosaur eggs have been collected from this region in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Dr. Zelenitsky also noted that a 3-ton Beibeilong sinensis sitting on its nest of eggs would have been a sight to see.

The Verge added that oviraptorosaurs were a bird-like dino that belonged to the same broad category as the Tyrannosaurus rex. The oviraptorosaur dinosaurs lived between 130 and 65 million years ago and made for really strange-looking dinosaurs -- similar to a crazy turkey on steroids.

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