Dinosaur with proto-feathers Sinosauropteryx
The full name of this animal, Sinosauropteryx prima, means "first Chinese winged lizard."
Its discovery in the mid-1990s delighted many paleontologists who
suspected that birds are close kin to dinosaurs. This fossil offered
evidence in the form of downy, short feathers all along the
animal's head, back, and tail. A carnivorous dinosaur about the size of a
greyhound, Sinosauropteryx likely
ran swiftly on its two hind legs. With fuzzy feathers just a few millimeters
long, it is unlikely that it ever flew. The feathers could, however, help keep
the dinosaur warm through cool nights in the temperate forest.