A newly discovered dinosaur, Yulong mini, was appropriately named, as the remains of its chicken-sized offspring are now among the smallest dinosaurs ever found, according to a new study.
The tiny baby dinosaurs, described in the journal Naturwissenschaften, were oviraptorids, a.k.a. "egg thieves." These non-flying dinosaurs resembled modern birds, except adults of some species could grow to over 26 feet long.
"Yulong looks like chicken with a tail," lead author Junchang Lü told Discovery News. "Its behavior was similar to living birds too. Based on the primitive oviraptors such as Caudipteryx, Yulong should be feathered, although we could not find feathers due to the poor preservation condition."
Lü, of the Chinese Academy of Geological Sciences, and his colleagues analyzed the dinosaur remains, which were unearthed at Henan Province in central China. In addition to Lü, the team included researchers from the Henan Geological Museum as well as Philip Currie from the University of Alberta.