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[翻译]SCIENCE IN THE NEWS - Scientists Discover a Dinosaur with Shiny, Color-Changing Feathers

更新时间:2018/1/22 6:56:05 来源:本站原创 作者:佚名

Scientists recently announced the discovery of a small, bird-like dinosaur from China which had unusual, colorful feathers.

科学家们最近宣布发现一种来自中国的类似于鸟的小恐龙,这种恐龙具有异常色彩鲜艳的羽毛。

The scientists named the dinosaur Caihong, the Mandarin word for rainbow. They discovered the nearly complete and almost entirely undamaged fossil in Hebei Province.

科学家们把这种恐龙命名为彩虹。他们在河北省发现了接近完整、几乎完全未损坏的化石。

Microscopic structures in the fossil suggest that the creature had wide, shiny feathers. The feathers mostly covered the dinosaur’s head and upper body. The colors of those feather would have appeared to change depending on how the light hit them.

化石的微观结构表明这种生物具有宽大而有光泽的羽毛。这些羽毛主要覆盖了该恐龙的头部和上身,它的颜色会根据照射到它的光线发生变化。

The colorful dinosaur lived 161 million years ago during the Jurassic Period of earth’s history.

这种色彩鲜艳的恐龙生活在1.61亿年前的地球侏罗纪时期。

Chad Eliason is an evolutionary biologist with the Field Museum in Chicago, Illinois. He helped write the study announcing the discovery in the scientific publication Nature Communications. Eliason told the Reuters news service that the discovery “suggests a more colorful Jurassic World than we previously imagined.”

查德·伊莱亚森(Chad Eliason)是伊利诺伊州芝加哥菲尔德博物馆的一名进化生物学家。他帮助撰写了这篇发表在《自然通讯》科学杂志上的研究论文。伊莱亚森对路透社表示,这一发现“表明侏罗纪时代的色彩比我们想象的要更加丰富。”

The scientists used powerful microscopes to identify the remains of the cell structures responsible for the apparent color of the feathers. The shape of those structures appears to have influenced what color the feathers would have. Round-shaped structures in the Caihong fossil show that it had feathers similar to that of a modern day hummingbird.

科学家们利用高倍显微镜来观察造成羽毛表面颜色的细胞结构的残留物。这些结构的形状似乎影响到了羽毛的颜色。彩虹恐龙化石中的圆形结构表明它具有和现代蜂鸟类似的羽毛。

Much of Caihong’s body had dark feathers. The shiny, color-changing feathers covered its head and neck. The dinosaur had many bird-like qualities. But researchers doubt that it could actually fly.

彩虹恐龙身体大部分都有黑色羽毛。这种富有光泽、颜色可以变化的羽毛覆盖了它的头部和颈部。这种恐龙具有多种跟鸟类一样的特质,但是研究人员怀疑它是否真正会飞。

Its feathers could have served the purpose of gaining the attention of sexual partners while also providing protection from heat and cold.

它的羽毛可能是为了吸引异性关注,同时可以保暖隔热。

Caihong was two-legged and had a long, narrow head with sharp teeth. It had boney crests above its eyes, and it hunted other, smaller animals for food.

彩虹恐龙有两只脚,头部细长并且具有锋利的牙齿。它的眼睛上方有多骨的鸟冠,靠捕捉其它小型动物为生。

Scientists say many dinosaurs had feathers. Birds evolved from small feathered dinosaurs near the end of the Jurassic Period.

科学家们表示,很多恐龙都有羽毛。鸟类是由侏罗纪时期末期的有羽毛的小型恐龙演化而来的。

A dinosaur of a different feather

一只羽毛不同的恐龙

Caihong had two kinds of feathers. It also is the earliest-known creature with feathers that did not have the same shape on both sides. This is a physical quality that modern birds have and use to direct themselves while flying.

彩虹恐龙有两种羽毛。它也是已知最早的羽毛具有两侧不对称结构的生物。这是现代鸟类具备的一种物理特性,用于在飞行时掌控方向。

The unevenly shaped feathers on Caihong were on its tail. This suggests that tail feathers, not arm feathers, were first used to improve movement through the air in flying dinosaurs, scientists said.

彩虹恐龙的这种不对称羽毛长在尾部。这表明是尾部羽毛,而不是翼部羽毛首先被恐龙用于改善飞行。

Xing Xu is a paleontologist with the Chinese Academy of Sciences. Xing Xu said, “It is extremely similar to some early birds such as Archaeopteryx.” Archaeopteryx is the earliest known bird. It is believed to have lived 150 million years ago.

徐星是中国科学院的一名古生物学家。他说:“这种恐龙与始祖鸟等一些早期鸟类非常相似。”始祖鸟是已知最早的鸟类,拒信它生活在1.5亿年前。

“To be honest, I am not sure what function the feathers have,” Xing Xu added. “And I don’t think that you can completely exclude the possibility that the feathers helped the animal to get in the air.”

徐星补充说:“老实说,我不确定羽毛有什么功能,我认为不能完全排除它飞向天空的可能性。”

The dinosaur’s full scientific name is Caihong juji, which means “rainbow with a big crest.”

这种恐龙的完整学名是彩虹巨嵴,意思是“拥有大冠子的彩虹恐龙。”

I’m Pete Musto.

Words in This Story

rainbow – n. a curved line of different colors that sometimes appears in the sky when the sun shines through rain

fossil – n. something, such as a leaf, skeleton, or footprint, that is from a plant or animal which lived in ancient times and that you can see in some rocks

feather(s) – n. any one of the light growths that make up the outer covering of the body of a bird

evolutionary – adj. related to a theory that the differences between modern plants and animals are because of changes that happened by a natural process over a very long time

hummingbird – n. a very small, brightly colored American bird that has wings which beat very fast

neck – n. the part of the body between the head and the shoulders

crest(s) – n. a group of decorative feathers at the top of a bird's head

tail – n. the part of an animal's body that extends from the animal's back end

paleontologist – n. someone whose job is to study the science that deals with the fossils of animals and plants that lived very long ago especially in the time of dinosaurs

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