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article imageNew dinosaur species found in Argentina, link to modern day birds

By Leigh Goessl     Jun 28, 2012 in Science
Scientists in Argentina have announced the discovery of a new dinosaur species. Paleontologists believe this finding could be the oldest link to modern-day birds.
According to Fox News, the new species has been named "Bicentenaria argentina" (Argentine Bicentenary).
"It is very likely the first example that's been found of a new line within the coelurosaur family, those dinosaurs that eventually gave rise to birds," the National Council on Scientific and Technical Research, or CONICET, which oversees the MACN, said in a statement, reported Fox.
Standing 9.8 feet in length (3 meters), the dinosaur was described as being "agile and thin" and believed to be a carnivore. Additionally, paleontologists believe the dinosaur had likely been covered in feathers.
The fossils, which were found in the southern province of Rio Negro in Argentina's Patagonia region, were presented this week to the Buenos Aires' Argentine Museum of Natural Sciences (MACN).
In all, 130 bones were found.
This find is noteworthy, not only because it’s a previously undiscovered species, but also because the fossils are believed to be the earliest link to date that connect to modern-day birds, reported BBC News. Fox 44 reported the species was also linked to Tyrannosaurus Rex.
"We can presume that they would have hunted smaller dinosaurs, herbivores or baby dinosaurs," Fernando Novas, the head of the museum and an independent CONICET researcher, said.
Scientists have dated the fossils back to about 90 million years ago in the Late Cretaceous period.
Last month, Digital Journal reported a new species of raptor dinosaur in the U.S. in the state of Utah.
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