Image Credit: Chuang Zhao
By Science Daily
New research details how a preserved fossil found in China could be the oldest record of post-natal parental care from the Middle Jurassic.
The specimen, found by a farmer in China, is of an apparent family group with an adult, surrounded by six juveniles of the same species. Given that the smaller individuals are of similar sizes, the group interpreted this as indicating an adult with its offspring, apparently from the same clutch.
A fossil specimen discovered by a farmer in China represents the oldest record of post-natal parental care, dating back to the Middle Jurassic.
The tendency for adults to care for their offspring beyond birth is a key feature of the reproductive biology of living archosaurs — birds and crocodilians — with the latter protecting their young from potential predators and birds, not only providing protection but also provision of food.
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