The dinosaurs of the Gobi

  • The Gobi desert, at the south-western tip of Mongolia, is now one of the most inhospitable areas in the world, but between 130 and 65 million years ago it was a region brimming with life, with large lakes and rivers. It’s here that, since the early twentieth century, the palaeontologists have been finding extremely rich deposits of fossils from the Cretaceous Period, when dinosaurs got to the height of their development before disappearing. In order to understand how important the finds of this area are, let’s just say that, of the seven systematic groups in which dinosaurs have been classed, as many as five are present in the fossils of the Gobi desert, and among them most of their carnivore species. It’s not just the variety of the species found that makes the Gobi desert unique, but rather the extremely precious fossils showing every stage of the dinosaurs’ life, such as still unopened eggs, remains of young dinosaurs just out of their eggs and even, in one case only, a predator and its prey together.

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