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SCIENCE: There Was a Rainbow Dinosaur

Rainbow Dinosaur
Credit: Zhao Chuang

Despite its fearsome, Velociraptor-like skull, a 161-million-year-old dinosaur the size of a duck would have been a shining, shimmering and splendid sight to behold — mostly because it sported gleaming, iridescent feathers that were rainbow-colored, a new study finds.

Iridescent feathers glistened on the dinosaur’s head, wings and tail, according to an analysis of the shape and structure of the creature’s melanosomes, the parts of cells that contain pigment.

“The preservation of this dinosaur is incredible — we were really excited when we realized the level of detail we were able to see on the feathers,” study co-researcher Chad Eliason, a postdoctoral researcher at the Field Museum in Chicago, said in a statement.

By Laura Geggel – Full Story at Live Science

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1 thought on “SCIENCE: There Was a Rainbow Dinosaur”

  1. This is really exciting! There aren’t many times scientists are able to get a good idea of what color ancient animals were because pigments don’t preserve well (or at all). It’s cool that they can look at the cells to find structural color.

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