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Science in Brief

SCIENCE FILE / An exploration of issues and trends affecting science, medicine and the environment. : Researchers Find Evidence of First Bird With a Beak

October 19, 1995| From Times staff and wire reports

Researchers working in China say they have found the remains of the first bird with a beak, and the discovery could point the way to the earliest bird of all. They named the bird Confuciusornis sanctus , after the ancient Chinese philosopher, and said its remains provided the first evidence of a bird covered with true feathers.

In a report in Nature, they said the bird's remains, dated to between 142 million and 137 million years ago, were the first Jurassic bird fossils to be found outside Germany. It was about 11 inches high--with feathers.

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