The footprints are shown at the turn of the Jurassic-Cretaceous, which are home to a strange class of ancient birds or bird-shaped dinosaurs. This finding is important for studying the distribution and evolution of late Mesozoic birds and dinosaur fauna in Europe and China.
According to reports, the province of Asturias in northern Spain has a very famous dinosaur fossil point on the Atlantic coast. Paleontologists have discovered a large number of Jurassic flora and fauna fossils dating back 150 million years. In 2002, the Spanish paleontologist Garcia-Lamos described some strange footprints from Asturias, but did not do further research. Unexpectedly, similar footprints appeared in Yunnan, China, more than ten years later.
The footsteps of Yunnan are in the back mountain of the Dinosaur Valley Museum, with a footprint of 18.5 cm and a width of about 35 cm. Through the comparison of global footprint fossils, the researchers found that the unique footprints of Asturias, in addition to the size difference, are very consistent. “We compared the footprints of these two batches in detail and realized that this is a brand new footprint species,” Xing Lida said.
The Xing Lida team named the Spanish specimen as the Pisch trigeminal footprint, and the Yunnan specimen was the trigeminal footprint of the Li talc. “The discovery of the Petri’s three-pronged footprint means that at the turn of the Jurassic-Cretaceous period, the Spanish coast lived with a class of very old shorebirds, while in the Lufeng Basin, thousands of miles away, the traces of the trigeminal footprint of the Lee’s talc They are a larger group of animals, which may be as tall as 1 meter or even taller, which was a very large ancient bird or bird-shaped dinosaur at the time,” said renowned footologist Martin Lockley.
Xing Lida said that the footprints of most birds in the world are from the early Cretaceous period. The records of the late Jurassic period are very rare. The new discoveries in Spain and Yunnan, China, and similar discoveries in Colorado, mean The early evolution of birds may be more complicated than imagined, and the trend of large-scale appears very early.
The study was completed by Xing Lida and Martin Lockley, curator of the University of Colorado Footprint Museum, and Dr. Anthony Romilio of the University of Queensland, Australia. The paper was published in “Historical Biology”.