43 Dinosaur Eggs Discovered in China
The Cretaceous period was a great time for the dinosaurs. 89 million years ago, the climate was hotter than it is now, and, unsurprisingly, dinosaurs dominated the planet. In what we now know as Asia, huge “duck-billed” dinosaurs were particularly common, as evidenced by a large collection of dinosaur eggs in China.
This isn’t just any collection of eggs, though, this is the largest collection of dinosaur eggs in the world, as noted on the Guinness World Records’ website since back in 2004. But they don’t have just a few hundred eggs, there are 10,008 in total. And now there will be a few extra eggs to add to the collection, after a recent discovery in the Chinese city of Heyuan, the self-professed “Home of Dinosaurs”.
All of the dinosaur eggs held at Heyuan Museum come from the Cretaceous period and duck-billed dinosaurs as we mentioned earlier. But none have ever been found in busy city areas, until now.
The latest eggs were discovered during major road works being carried out in the city centre. When the eggs were uncovered, the work ground to a halt. Researchers were called in, and aided by the construction workers, they uncovered a total of 43 eggs. Of these, 19 had remained intact.
“The eggs were found in the rock strata of red sandstone,” explained Du Yanli, Heyuan Museum Curator, “an environment in which other dinosaur eggs fossils have also previously be found.”
After an initial examination of the eggs, it’s not yet known what species of dinosaur they belong to, but the largest is about seven inches in diameter (almost 18cm). The eggs have now be sent to the Chinese Academy of Sciences, where researchers will continue with their examination of the eggs to find out which species they’re from.
The first fossilised dinosaur eggs to be found in the city were those discovered by a group of children in 1996. The schoolboys had been playing on a construction site when they found what they thought were some unusual stones. Later, these were identified as eggs by local dinosaur expert Huang Dong.
Since then, more than 17,000 eggs have been discovered in Heyuan, with the intact ones making up the museum’s esteemed collection.