99-million-year-old bird trapped in amber is near-perfectly preserved
A sticky situation for a baby bird 99 million years ago is a coup for modern scientists.The hatchling, which was just a few days old when it stumbled into a pool of tree sap, roamed the Earth nearly 100 million years ago. Scientists, who published their findings in the journal Gondwana Research, say the specimen is the most complete fossil ever discovered in Burmese amber.
"It's the most complete and detailed view we've ever had," Ryan McKellar of the Royal Saskatchewan Museum, co-author of the paper, told New Scientist. "Seeing something this complete is amazing. It's just stunning."After years encased in amber, the bird's flesh has likely broken down into carbon, McKellar explained, meaning none of its DNA remains. What is left, however, is a detailed impression of the creature.