Image of the Day: Chickens with dinosaur tails

Credit: Holly Woodward

Jurassic Park is fiction, because for a lot of reasons, you can't get useful dinosaur DNA out of mosquitoes in amber. Realistically, the fastest way to get to a living, breathing dinosaur is to start with the dinosaurs that we already have and work backwards. By taking something like a chicken and genetically de-evolving it by about 100 million years, you might be able to end up with a small little dinosaur thing, which would be kinda cool.

We have no way of doing this at the moment, although it's being worked on. What we can do, though, is look at birds (like chickens) as analogues for dinosaurs. Chickens may not have tails like dinosaurs, but that's not a problem, because scientists (being awesome) decided to stick a dinosaur tail on a chicken just to see what would happen:

This is science, and not just ridiculous, because with a weighted tail, the chicken's center of gravity is changed, forcing it to adopt a gait that shows us how dinosaurs may have walked.

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PLOS, via io9

Video via PLOS, *.gif via io9

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