Sinosauropteryx

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Learn more about Sinosauropteryx

Quick Facts
NameSinosauropteryx
Diet
Weight3 kg
Length1 meter
Height0.3 meters
Period
Sinosauropteryx
Human

Sinosauropteryx was a small carnivorous dinosaur that lived in China about 125 million years ago. It was the first dinosaur found with evidence of feathers. It revealed that it had light and dark feather stripes along its tail. 

Sinosauropteryx was covered with a layer of very simple filament-like feathers and indicated that they were orange-reddish in color. It was the first non-avian dinosaur in which coloration was determined. 

Sinosauropteryx had a longer tail and shorter arms with a three-fingered hand dominated by the first finger. It has a bony tail and sharp teeth. 

It was a small bipedal theropod and a fast hunter that could not fly. Still, they had used it for courtship, individual identification, isolation, or a combination of these. 

Sinosauropteryx was the longest specimen known, reaching up to 1.07 meters in length, with an estimated weight of 0.55 kilograms. It was a carnivore, as one specimen had the jaw of a mammal in its stomach that ate lizards, insects and small mammals. It also had 64 vertebrae in its tail. 

In 1996, it was found by Chinese farmers, including Li Yin Fang, in the dry field near Liaoning Province (China). 

Is a Sinosauropteryx a carnivore?

Definitely! Sinosauropteryx was a small carnivorous dinosaur that ate lizards, insects and small mammals. In addition, it had 64 vertebrae in its tail. 

What was Sinosauropteryx like?

Sinosauropteryx was a small carnivorous dinosaur covered with a layer of very simple, filament-like feathers that indicated it was reddish orange. It was the first non-avian dinosaur in which coloration was determined. It had a longer tail and short arms with a three-fingered hand dominated by the first finger. It had a bony tail and sharp teeth. It was a bipedal theropod and a fast hunter that could not fly. Still, they may have been used for courtship display, individual identification, isolation, or a combination of these. 
Sinosauropteryx was the longest known specimen, reaching up to 1.07 meters in length, with an estimated weight of 0.55 kilograms.

At what speed can Sinosauropteryx operate?

Sinosauropteryx was a bipedal dinosaur and could most likely run at breakneck speeds of around 40 miles per hour.

How big is Sinosauropteryx?

Sinosauropteryx was the longest known specimen, reaching up to 1.07 meters in length, with an estimated weight of 0.55 kilograms. 

Where did they live?

When did they live?

What was your diet?

Who discovered them?

What kind of dinosaurs are they?

What type of species are they?

  • Ji, Q. and Ji, S. (1996). "On discovery of the earliest bird fossil in China and the origin of birds." Chinese Geology, 10(233): 30-33.
  • Chen, P., Dong, Z. and Zhen, S. (1998). "An exceptionally well-preserved theropod dinosaur from the Yixian Formation of China." Nature, 391(8): 147-152.
  • Therrien, F.; Henderson, D.M.. (2007). "My theropod is bigger than yours...or not: estimating body size from skull length in theropods". Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 27 (1): 108-115. doi:10.1671/0272-4634(2007)27[108:MTIBTY]2.0.CO;2. 
  • Browne, M.W. (1996). "Feathery Fossil Hints Dinosaur-Bird Link." The New York Times, Saturday 19 October 1996. Section 1 page 1 of the New York edition.
  • Ji, S., Gao, C., Liu, J., Meng, Q., and Ji, Q. (2007). "New material of Sinosauropteryx (Theropoda: Compsognathidae) from western Liaoning, China." Acta Geologica Sinica (English Edition) 81(2):177-182.
  • Gishlick & Gauthier (2007). "On the manual morphology of Compsognathus longipes and its bearing on the diagnosis of Compsognathidae." Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society, 149: 569-581.
  • Zhou, Z. (2006). "Evolutionary radiation of the Jehol Biota: chronological and ecological perspectives." Geological Journal, 41: 377-393.
  • Stieg, B. (1997). "Debate rages over birds' relation to dinosaurs." Knight-Ridder Newspapers, 23 April 2007.
  • Morell, V. (1997). "The origin of birds: the dinosaur debate." Audubon MagazineApril 1997 issue: 36-45.
  • Currie, P.J. and Chen, P.-j. (2001). "Anatomy of Sinosauropteryx prima from Liaoning, northeastern China." Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences, 38(1): 705-727.
  • Ji, Q., and Ji, S. (1997). "Advances in Sinosauropteryx Research." Chinese Geology, 7: 30-32.
  • Hurum, Jørn H.; Luo, Zhe-Xi & Kielan-Jaworowska, Zofia (2006): Were mammals originally venomous? Acta Palaeontologica Polonica 51(1): 1-11.PDF fulltext
  • Longrich, N. (2002). "Systematics of Sinosauropteryx." Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, 22(3): 80A.
  • Access : Fossil feathers reveal dinosaurs' true colors : Nature News
  • Lingham-Soliar, T et al. (2007) Proc. R. Soc. Lond. B doi:10.1098/rspb.2007.0352.
  • Access : Bald dino casts doubt on feather theory : Nature News
geological time 3

Fun Facts

Hi, kids! Here are some fun and exciting facts about Sinosauropteryx.

 

  • Sinosauropteryx was a bipedal dinosaur or walked on two legs.
  •  It was the first non-avian dinosaur in which coloration has been determined.
  • It was the first dinosaur found with evidence of feathers.
  • It had the longest tail 
  • It had feathers but could not fly

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