Lizard or Dragon: Prehistoric Winged Lizard Unearthed in Chile

Hedi Benayed, Staff Writer

Chilean paleontologists have recently discovered the first-ever Southern Hemisphere remains of the Jurassic era ‘’wing lizards.” Fossils of the dinosaur, which lived some 160 million years ago, in what is today the Atacama desert, were unearthed in 2009.

Unlike dinosaurs, dragons are mythical winged reptiles. In European tradition, the dragon is typically fire-breathing and tends to symbolize chaos or evil, whereas in East Asia it is usually a beneficent symbol of fertility, associated with water and the heavens. Based on the findings of Chilean paleontologists, the dragon has its roots in reality. A pterosaur, or a flying reptile of the Jurassic and Cretaceous periods, may have actually resembled the dragon, with membranous wings supported by a greatly lengthened fourth finger.