Aug 26, 2010 10:05 PM by Alison Haynes
CINCINNATI (AP) - Dinosaur fossils, including a rib more than 9
feet long from a species of the long-necked titanosaur family, are
making their North American debut Friday at a Cincinnati museum.
Four of the fossils are among
Alaska state rn that were found
from 2005 to 2007 in China's Henan province. The rib and three
vertebrae came from a titanosaur that paleontologists believe was
30 feet tall, close to 100 feet long and probably weighed 32 to 87
The fossils in the exhibit date back to 144 million to 100
million years ago, officials at the Cincinnati Museum Center said.
After the fossils were identified, researchers found that
villagers in the region had been digging up dinosaur bones for
centuries, believing them to be dragon bones and grinding them up
"Henan could become the largest dinosaur field in China," said
Daoping Bao, president and CEO of Dinosaurs Unearthed Corp., a
dinosaur exhibition company based in Canada.
Discovery of the fossils from the titanosaur family, named after
the mythological Titans from ancient Greece, was important to China
and to the field of paleontology, said officials with the museum
and Di" Iaurs Unearthed.
"It enabled identification of a new species of titanosaur,"
said Glenn Storrs, curator of vertebrate paleontology at the
The exhibit also includes a fossilized nest of eggs laid by an
unknown species of the feathered, beaked oviraptorosaur. The
eye-catching attraction that first greets exhibition visitors
measures more than 5 feet in diameter and contains 26 eggs
averaging a foot or more in length and laid in pairs around the
edge of the round nest.
This nest is important because it shows the eggs were laid in a
manner similar to bird eggs today, said Storrs.
"It is another addition to the broad amount of evidence linking
living birds with extinct dinosaurs," he said.
The entire collection of fossils from Henan has only been
displayed in a museum in Henan, although two of the fossils were
displayed briefly in Japan, officials with Dinosaurs Unearthed
The Cincinnati exhHR t will continue through mid-October, when
the collection will be included in a larger Dinosaurs Unearthed
exhibition of the Chinese fossils set to begin touring the United
States and Canada. Sites have yet to be announced.
The fossils are on loan from the Henan Geological Museum in
China and were obtained through a partnership between the
Cincinnati and Henan museums and Dinosaurs Unearthed.