Researchers from different universities in Spain, Portugal and Argentina were able to do this He first described the fossil of a giant bird at least 1.5 meters high, found in the Aragonese Pyrenees, which coexisted with the last dinosaurs in Europe before the great extinction at the end of the Cretaceous period.
Work published in the Global Journal Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, Led by researchers from the Aragosaurus-IUCA group of the Spanish University of Zaragoza (Unizar) and researchers from universities in the Canary Islands, Portugal and Argentina also collaborated on this, Unizar said in a press release.
The fossil is a cervical vertebra that presents a series of characteristics that allow it to be identified as belonging to a large bird, 1.5-1.8 meters in height, which will have a long and flexible neck.
The fossil was compared to the vertebrae of present and extinct dinosaurs and theropods from all over the world, after which the nature of birds came to light clearly, although it is more primitive than the present-day birds.As explained by Manuel Perez Puyo, Aragosaurus-IUCA researcher and lead author of the work.
During the development of the research, micro-CT of the vertebra was performed in the laboratory of the National Center for Research of Human Evolution in Burgos, to study its internal structure.
CT scanning allowed us to observe a hollow structure with multiple cavities and chambers, typical of the respiratory system with air sacs similar to those found in modern birds.
The A fossil was found in 2009 at the Pain site, Located in the continental sedimentary rock outcrops of the Tremp Formation in Aragon, northeastern Spain.
The histories of this area made in earlier work place these rocks during the past 250,000 years of the Cretaceous period, very close temporarily to the Cretaceous / Paleogene boundary and the extinction of non-avian dinosaurs.
According to Unizar, This finding is closely related to European vertebrate palaeontology, because although the existence of large birds was known in the Cretaceous period in Europe, not one of them was recorded very close to the Cretaceous / Paleogene boundary.
This paragraph is More recent evidence of a Mesozoic bird in Europe shows that large birds coexisted with other dinosaurs just before their extinction., Which means that the continental animal societies at the end of the Cretaceous period in Iberia were more diverse than what has been known until now.
Future discoveries will help unravel the role this animal has played in these ecosystems and the kinship relationships with other birds.
(With information from EFE)