Who Needs Jurassic Park When We Have Liaoning, China

Longreads

In The Middle of Nowhere, China, 250 miles northeast of Beijing, a massive new museum is rising up from the dusty earth. It will house a portion of the findings from Liaoning, a region whose abundance of fossils is helping paleontologists understand dinosaurs’ relationship to birds in more detail — and making China the new paleontology hot spot. Richard Conniff has the full story for Smithsonian.

Nonetheless, there’s genuine fossil wealth being revealed in Liaoning. Many of the slabs have been transferred to Beijing, where preparators are getting them ready for display. One morning in the basement of the IVPP, I watched a young man stare through the dual lenses of a microscope as he worked an air-pressure tool along the length of a wing bone. The needle-pointed tip whined and flecks of stone flew out to the sides, gradually freeing bone from matrix. Nearby a woman used…

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