What led feathers to develop among the dinosaurs that likely gave rise to birds? The fossil of a small, predatory dinosaur discovered in Germany has left experts rethinking on this question.
Some 150 million years ago, the small, long-tailed predator romped the earth surface. According to experts, the fossil represents the best example of a European dinosaur from this period. It was in Bavaria, in southern Germany, the fossil was discovered in limestone rock.
Despite the fact that the dinosaur’s Jurassic-age contemporaries from the same group were feathered, the specimen includes sections of fossilized skin that shows no evidence of feathers. The new species is named Juravenator starki. And it belongs to a group of theropods-meat-eating, two-legged dinosaurs-that many scientists believe also gave rise to birds.