Scientists in China have discovered a perfectly preserved dinosaur embryo in the process of hatching from its egg, precisely like a chicken. According to researchers, the embryo was discovered near Ganzhou, China, and is thought to be at least 66 million years old. It has been given the name Baby Yingliang and is thought to be a toothless theropod dinosaur or oviraptorosaur. According to researcher Dr. Fion Waisum Ma, it is “the best dinosaur embryo ever found in history”. Researchers now have a better understanding of the relationship between dinosaurs and current birds as a result of the discovery. The embryo was curled in a position known as “tucking” in the fossil, which is a habit found in birds shortly before they hatch.

Prof. Steve Brusatte, who was also a member of the research team, said it was “one of the most stunning dinosaur fossils” he had ever seen, and that the embryo was about to hatch. The Yingliang Stone Nature History Museum in China has baby Yingliang that is 10.6in (27cm) long from head to tail and lies inside a 6.7 inch-long egg. The egg was uncovered in 2000, but it was hidden for ten years. Researchers turned their attention to the egg, which they assumed was holding an embryo within, only when construction work on the museum began and old fossils were being sorted through. Researchers will utilize advanced scanning techniques to obtain an image of the dinosaur’s whole skeleton because part of its body is still covered by rock.