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Rare Dinosaur-Bird Fossils Found in Australia

By KM Diaz, | April 21, 2017

Mike D'Arcy found the first ever fossil of the dinosaur bird in Richmond, in a dry quarry about 500 kilometers from the East Coast of Australia. (YouTube)

Mike D'Arcy found the first ever fossil of the dinosaur bird in Richmond, in a dry quarry about 500 kilometers from the East Coast of Australia. (YouTube)

A rare dinosaur-bird fossil has been unearthed in Australia. The 100-million-year-old bones were found at a site in Australia's Inland Sea.

Mike D'Arcy found the first ever fossil of the dinosaur-bird in Richmond, in a dry quarry about 500 kilometers from the East Coast of Australia. It has been named "Richmond Raptor."

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D'Arcy started his project five years ago. After he found the fragmented bones, he initially assumed that it was a bird. He recovered half a dozen of the remains, but when he got the humerus, he realized that what he had unearthed was a bird, which was later confirmed to be a "dinosaur-bird."

After his discovery, D'Arcy recruited other local volunteers to unearth other potential dinosaur-bird fossils around the area.

Meanwhile, Patrick Smith, a curator of Richmond's Kronosaurus Korner, said that dinosaur fossils are very hard to find in the town, and this discovery is significant since there have not been any primitive birds found in Richmond.

Richmond is the capital of Australia's Inland Sea. The findings indicate that dinosaur-birds previously existed in the middle of a seaway, Smith noted.

The fossils are thought to represent the so-called "Nanantius eos" species - a creature close to a seagull. According to Smith, these species have tiny hands with claws similar to a dinosaur, teeth in their mouth, and limb bones a bit comparable to KFC. The creatures are similar to modern seagulls that mostly relies on fish as their source of foods and reside in the coastline.

The Nanantius eos is currently being displayed at the Kronosaurus Korner.

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