Rock Found 52 Years Ago in Japan Confirmed as Dinosaur Egg Fossil (News)


Fukui, June 5 (Jiji Press)—A rock collected in 1965 by a then high school student in the city of Shimonoseki, Yamaguchi Prefecture, in western Japan, has been confirmed to be a dinosaur egg fossil, the city and the Fukui Prefectural Dinosaur Museum said Monday.

Previously, fossils of eight types of dinosaur eggs have been discovered in Japan, in the prefectures of Fukui, Gifu and Hyōgo.

The fossilized egg confirmed this time is different from the eight types, and it is highly likely to be an egg laid by a bipedal carnivorous dinosaur, or theropod, the city and the museum said.

The egg fossil, broken into pieces, is also the dinosaur fossil found earliest in the country. Previously, a fossil of the upper arm of a Moshiryu dinosaur found in the town of Iwaizumi, Iwate Prefecture, northeastern Japan, in 1978, had been considered to be the first dinosaur fossil discovery in the nation.

The rock was collected by Shimizu Yoshiharu, a native of Shimonoseki, and a friend in September 1965, when Shimizu was a second-year high school student, according to the museum in the city of Katsuyama, Fukui Prefecture. They discovered it in a layer dating back to the early Cretaceous period, or between some 120 million and 100 million years ago, in the upstream area of the Ayaragi river in Shimonoseki.

Pieces of the dinosaur egg fossil collected in 1965, on display at the Fukui Prefectural Dinosaur Museum on June 2, 2017. (© Jiji)

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