Caudipteryx

p1160891This is a rather nice life reconstruction of Caudipteryx (an oviraptorosaurian) that stands in the Museum of Geology in Beijing. Caudipteryx is one of the better known feathered dinosaurs to have come out of Liaoning with a number of well preserved and complete speciemns known (six at the last count I believe, though there are almost certainly others hiding out in private collections or that remain unprepared in collection basements). I have seen four of these and each is in very good condition and preserved in an almost identical postures and each with a good selection of feathers, especially those long vaned feathers on the arms and the classic ‘tail-fan’ both of which are shown off on this model to good effect (though you can’t see the latter from this photo, sorry).

I do have rather an affection for these kinds of life reconstructions which seem to be quite common in Asian museums. They provide a nice compliment to the fossils themselves and help to show how the animal would look rather better than 2-D artwork often can, especially when the original fossil itself is flat and hard to mentally interpret if you have not seen them before. The more the merrier as far as I am concerned and this is a great example.


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