If you’re no longer enjoying your job as a builder, perhaps you should head over to China since construction workers here have made some pretty darn interesting paleontological discoveries over the years.
In January, we heard that some bones dug up by builders a decade ago turned out to be a previously unknown species of long-necked dinosaur, or sauropod, which had a neck half the length of its body. Now, workers helping to upgrade a road in southern China have made another remarkable find: 43 fossilized dinosaur eggs.
The specimens were discovered earlier this month in the city of Heyuan, Guangdong Province, which has rightfully earned itself the nickname “hometown of the dinosaur.” According to city authorities, more than 17,000 fragments of dinosaur eggs have been discovered since the mid ‘90s, when a group of schoolboys unearthed the first specimens at a building site after mistaking them for stones. This staggering number of finds has landed Heyuan a place in the Guinness Book of World Records as the city with the largest known collection of dinosaur eggs.
Amongst the latest discovery were 19 completely intact, large eggs, the biggest of which was 13 centimeters (7 inches) in diameter, South China Morning Post reports. At this stage, it is unclear to which species the eggs belong, but they have been handed over to the Chinese Academy of Sciences for further examination.
Because of the scientific importance of such discoveries, Du Yanil, director of the city’s Dinosaur Museum, thinks that construction projects should be stopped if fossils are unearthed at building sites, which could be problematic since he believes there are probably many more to be found in the city’s sandstone beds.
In China, it’s illegal not to report discoveries such as this to the authorities. Just over a decade ago, a farmer in Heuyan was detained after police discovered a stash of 557 fossilized dinosaur eggs at his home.
[Via South China Morning Post and the Telegraph]