This 99-Million-Year-Old Dinosaur Tail Is Covered in Feathers

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Photo: R.C. McKellar/Royal Saskatchewan Museum

In what sounds like the plot of a dumb Hollywood blockbuster, a Chinese paleontologist walking through a market in Myanmar last year was offered a chance to buy something incredible — the feathered tail of a 99-million-year-old dinosaur. Encased in amber and joined by bugs and plant pieces, this tail provides the most complete picture of dinosaur feathers that researchers have ever found. “It’s one of those things where you’re like, ‘Wow, it’s the closest you’ll ever get to holding a fleshed-out dinosaur in your hands,’” Ryan McKellar, a Canadian paleontologist, told the Times. As for the dinosaur itself, the beast is believed to have been about the size of sparrow but to have looked more like a velociraptor than a modern bird. Or something like this:

99-Million-Year-Old Dinosaur Tail Is Covered in Feathers