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Unique 'Batman' dinosaur discovered in China

By T.K. Randall
April 30, 2015 · Comment icon 12 comments

Yi qi had wings that closely resembled those of a bat. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 3.0 F. C. Robiller
A sparrow-sized flying dinosaur with wings resembling those of a bat has been unearthed by scientists.
China has been home to a slew of new dinosaur discoveries in recent years and now researchers have announced another new species to add to the list - a small feathered dinosaur named Yi qi which means 'strange wing'.

What sets Yi qi apart from other early flying dinosaurs is its unusual wing structure which exhibits a huge backwards bone on each wrist and a thin tissue membrane that connects the fingers and bones to form a pair of unusual bat-like wings.

While not a direct ancestor of today's birds, Yi qi's unorthodox bat wings are more similar in concept to the gliding mechanisms that have evolved in today's flying squirrels and sugar gliders.
"It definitely evolved a wing that is unique in the context of the transition from dinosaurs to birds," said study lead author Professor Xu Xing.

Yi qi is thought to have lived around 160 million years ago and was part of a little-known group of dinosaurs known as scansoriopterygids of which only a few other specimens have ever been found.

"All told, this is an unexpected, exciting specimen that changes our views on the evolution of flight in dinosaurs," said Dr Mike Habib of the University of Southern California.

Source: The Guardian | Comments (12)

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #3 Posted by bubblykiss 9 years ago
Meh..if it can't swim I'm not interested.. Yes, but did it taste like chicken or bats or bat **** crazy chickens?
Comment icon #4 Posted by DefenceMinisterMishkin 9 years ago
This makes it more appealing to me, but still, no love for H2O..
Comment icon #5 Posted by She-ra 9 years ago
Another amazing discovery wrestled from the silent stones of China. Of great interest is the feathered legs http://fossil.wikia....hered_dinosaurs A lovely find to break the tedious terror and general horror that has been the last 3 days of news. That pictured Deininychus antirropus was both cool as heck and frightening all at the same time!
Comment icon #6 Posted by theotherguy 9 years ago
Na na na na na na na na Bat-saur! Bat-saur!
Comment icon #7 Posted by She-ra 9 years ago
Na na na na na na na na Bat-saur! Bat-saur! Hahahahaaaaa. I'm sorry but I have to do this. I love Batman and I love Kilts so here's my Batman in a kilt picture for the Bat Dinosaur
Comment icon #8 Posted by Hammerclaw 9 years ago
Looks like a Mahar from the book "At The Earth's Core"
Comment icon #9 Posted by paperdyer 9 years ago
So....can this lead to the theory that rodents were once dinosaurs like birds? If so, maybe other mammals as well.
Comment icon #10 Posted by ancient astronaut 9 years ago
Coincidentally, they've (Paleontologist(s)) have also discovered a Robin Dinosaur.
Comment icon #11 Posted by Ashyne 9 years ago
It looks almost exactly like a dragon. Maybe dragon myths came from sightings of these creatures.
Comment icon #12 Posted by Kenemet 9 years ago
It looks almost exactly like a dragon. Maybe dragon myths came from sightings of these creatures. Alas, no. For one thing, it's the size of a pigeon (so fossils are EXTREMELY rare -- which is why we have only found pieces of one.) And for another, it died around 90 million years before people showed up.

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