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Soft, fleshy comb found on top of fossil of duck-billed dinosaur

By Kyle Johnson,

A well-preserved fossil of the Edmontosaurus regalis unearthed in Grand Prairie, Alberta was found with the remains of a soft, fleshy comb on the top of its head.

According to CBC, the comb is similar to what roosters have and left scientists wondering what other parts dinosaurs might have that they can't discern from a fossil.

The duck-billed dinosaur was a herbivore that grew to an average size of a bus during the late Cretaceous period, which would put the fossil at roughly over 65 million years old.

Phil Bell, of the University of New England in Australia, said in a news statement, "This discovery is equivalent to learning for the first time that elephants had trunks. ... Up until now there have been no clues to suggest they might have had a big fleshy crest," reports The Edmonton Journal.

Bell added that the comb might be used similarly to what roosters use theirs for, to "get the girls."

CBC notes that the dinosaur fossil isn't a true fossil as it is more like being "mummified." These well-preserved fossils occasionally leave behind things like the impression of the creature's skin.

image: Wikimedia Commons

 
 

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