Amber capture

10 Dec 2016

At ... a segment of the tail of a juvenile dinosaur, complete with feathers, as been found trapped in amber as reported in Current Biology (December 8th, 2016) and see also

   ... It is in fact the tip of a tail and includes feathers, and originates from a very young coelurosaur (a small dinosaur). The tail consists of several segments of vertebrae - from the end part of what had been a long tail. The feathers are described as early in the evolutionary chain, dinosaur like rather than the feathers later common to birds. It was found in Maynmar in southern China.

At ... we have mammals living in the era of the dinosaurs. These are usually pictured as dimunitive creatures scuttling around in the background of the big dinosaurs. This version is more akin to marsupials and is the size of an opossum (in US terms) or a badger (in European terms), and was equipped with a powerful set of jaws and chompers. It dates from around 66 million years, almost at the cusp of the K/T boundary event.