Scientists have discovered a small, bat-like winged, fossil of a dinosaur that once resided in northeast China 160 million years ago. The Chinese researchers named it Yi qi, (ee chee) which is Mandarin for “strange wing.”
Xu Xing, one of the lead researchers on the paper and professor at the institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology in Beijing, told USA Today in a statement that “no other bird of dinosaur has a wing of the same kind.”
We thought giving this animal a name meaning ‘strange wing’ was appropriate, because no other bird or dinosaur has a wing of the same kind.
According to the study Yi qi has a long “rodlike” bone protruding from each wrist that’s similar to those found on flying squirrels and bats, it’s not clear whether they flapped or merely allowed the creature to glide.
The specimen also had feathers and membranous tissue, but likely didn’t have flapping wings. Kevin Padian, a University of California-Berkeley paleontologist who peer reviewed the research told USA Today that is conjectural because its body seems out of proportion for a glider.
So far the fossil is incomplete so researchers have had to estimate the overall size and tail end of the animal, according to Padian. However, it was likely quite small because the skull measures only about 4 centimeters long.
According to CBS Xu said he couldn’t envision the wings being used for anything other than flying, saying “it’s a totally bizarre animal.”
It’s a totally bizarre animal. We believe it can fly, though it probably was not a great flyer (…) it shows close to the transition to birds, there are bizarre lineages. some of them tried to get into air, but most except the bird lineage failed.
In other dinosaur related news here at Immortal News, researchers discovered a dinosaur in China with a neck 25-feet long.