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Zhenyuanlong
Temporal range: Early Cretaceous
ZhenyuanlongEmilyWilloughby.jpg
An artist's ilustration of Zhenyuanlong suni
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Sauropsida
Superorder: Theropoda
Genus: Zhenyuanlong
Lü & Brusatte, 2015
Species: Z. suni
Binomial name
Zhenyuanlong suni
Lü & Brusatte, 2015

Zhenyuanlong (jhen-wahn-long)

Zhenyuanlong (meaning "Zhenyuan's dragon" from Chinese Pinyin; 龙 Lóng means dragon) is an extinct genus of dromaeosaurs that existed during the early Cretaceous period in what is now China.

This type specimen preserved a nearly complete skeleton missing half of the tail, but containing traces of feathers, including long tail feathers and large wings.

It is known from a single specimen belonging to the species Zhenyuanlong suni.

Description

Zhenyuanlong suni was a mid-sized dromaeosaurid comparable in length to the similar Tianyuraptor. It was perhaps up to 2 meters (6.6ft) in life. It had short arms compared to the size of its body and had a fan of long feathers on them, like wings. It's currently the largest non-avian dinosaur with complex feathers known.

Zhenyuanlong size chart

Size of Zhenyuanlong compared to a human.

Discovery

The only specimen of Zhenyuanlong was found by a farmer near Sihedang in Jianchang, Liaoning Province in China. It was later studied at the Jinzhou Paleontological Museum. There, the type species was also named and described by paleontologists.

Zhenyuanlong

Fossil of Zhenyuanlong

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