Qiang Ji's research while affiliated with Hebei University and other places

Publications (85)

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A new enantiornithine, Musivavis amabilis n. gen. n. sp., is reported from the Lower Cretaceous Jehol Biota in western Liaoning, China. The new taxon is similar to the bohaiornithids in the robust subconical teeth, bluntly expanded omal ends of the furcula, caudolaterally oriented lateral trabeculae with triangular distal ends of the sternum, and a...
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As one of the most complete archaic human fossils, the Harbin cranium provides critical evidence for studying the diversification of the Homo genus and the origin of Homo sapiens. However, the unsystematic recovery of this cranium and a long and confused history since the discovery impede its accurate dating. Here, we carried out a series of geoche...
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Hereditary hierarchy is one of the major features of complex societies. Without a written record, prehistoric evidence for hereditary hierarchy is rare. Intentional cranial deformation (ICD) is a ritualized and cross-generational cultural practice that embodies social identity and cultural beliefs in adults through the behavior of permanently and i...
Article
We describe a new taxon of advanced ornithuromorph bird, Khinganornis hulunbuirensis gen. et sp. nov., from the previously unreported Pigeon Hill locality of the Lower Cretaceous Longjiang Formation in the northern Greater Khingan Range area of Inner Mongolia, China. A cladistics analysis resolves K. hulunbuirensis as the sister group of a clade fo...
Preprint
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Hereditary hierarchy is one of the major features of complex societies. Without a written record, prehistoric evidence for hereditary hierarchy is rare. Intentional cranial deformation (ICD) is a cross-generational cultural practice that embodies social identity and culture beliefs in adults through the behavior of altering infant head shape. There...
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Stem mammaliaforms are Mesozoic forerunners to mammals, and they offer critical evidence for the anatomical evolution and ecological diversification during the earliest mammalian history. Two new eleutherodonts from the Late Jurassic period have skin membranes and skeletal features that are adapted for gliding. Characteristics of their digits provi...
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Stem mammaliaforms are forerunners to modern mammals, and they achieved considerable ecomorphological diversity in their own right. Recent discoveries suggest that eleutherodontids, a subclade of Haramiyida, were more species-rich during the Jurassic period in Asia than previously recognized. Here we report a new Jurassic eleutherodontid mammaliafo...
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The relationship between tooth form and dietary preference is a crucial issue in vertebrate evolution. However, the mechanical properties of a tooth are influenced not only by its shape but also by its internal structure. Here, we use synchrotron transmission X-ray microscopy to examine the internal microstructures of multiple dinosaur teeth within...
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A new Late Jurassic docodontan shows specializations for a subterranean lifestyle. It is similar to extant subterranean golden moles in having reduced digit segments as compared to the ancestral phalangeal pattern of mammaliaforms and extant mammals. The reduction of digit segments can occur in mammals by fusion of the proximal and intermediate pha...
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A new docodontan mammaliaform from the Middle Jurassic of China has skeletal features for climbing and dental characters indicative of an omnivorous diet that included plant sap. This fossil expands the range of known locomotor adaptations in docodontans to include climbing, in addition to digging and swimming. It further shows that some docodontan...
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We describe a new ornithuromorph bird species, Gansus zheni from the Lower Cretaceous lacustrine deposits of the Jiufotang Formation (Jehol Group), Liaoning Province, China. A cladistic analysis resolves Gansus zheni as the sister taxon of the roughly contemporaneous Gansus yumenensis (Xiagou Formation, Gansu Province), and together as the most imm...
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Changmachelys bohlini gen. et sp. nov., from the Lower Cretaceous Xiagou Formation, Changma Basin, north-western Gansu Province, adds to our understanding of the diversity and distribution of Early Cretaceous turtles in Asia. Changmachelys bohlini is similar to Early Cretaceous turtles from Asia included in “Macrobaenidae” in having a low domed car...
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Multituberculates were successful herbivorous mammals and were more diverse and numerically abundant than any other mammal groups in Mesozoic ecosystems. The clade also developed diverse locomotor adaptations in the Cretaceous and Paleogene. We report a new fossil skeleton from the Late Jurassic of China that belongs to the basalmost multitubercula...
Article
Upper Jurassic–Lower Cretaceous transitional successions are widely distributed in the Tethyan Himalaya, southeast of Yangzuoyong Co Lake, southern Tibet. In ascending order, these include the Weimei (J3, Tithonian), Sangxiu/Jiabula formations (K1, Berriasian). The J/K boundary is located between the Weimei Formation and Sangxiu/Jiabula Formations....
Article
A new oviraptorosaur Ningyuansaurus wangi gen. et sp. nov. is erected based on a nearly complete skeleton with skull and lower jaw. It is characterized by: at least 10 upper and 14 lower jaw teeth on each side; ratio of femur to ilium is approximate 1.93; distal caudal vertebrae much elongated. The elongated skull with toothed jaws (more teeth than...
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Two skeletons of the large compsognathid Sinocalliopteryx gigas include intact abdominal contents. Both specimens come from the Jianshangou Beds of the lower Yixian Formation (Neocomian), Liaoning, China. The holotype of S. gigas preserves a partial dromaeosaurid leg in the abdominal cavity, here attributed to Sinornithosaurus. A second, newly-disc...
Article
The Devonian–Carboniferous (D/C) boundary marks a major extinction event and an important evolutionary turnover in Paleozoic biotas, but understanding D/C boundary events is hampered by a lack of accurate and consistent ages. As a result, although a global stratotype section and point (GSSP) for the D/C boundary was defined in the section La Serre...
Article
A new ctenochasmatoid pterosaur, Gladocephaloideus jingangshanensis gen. et sp. nov. from the Yixian Formation of western Laioning Province is erected based on a complete skull and partial postcranial skeleton. It is characterized by following features: about 50 total teeth with sharp tips; small nasoantorbital opening, occupying approximately 13%...
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Placentals are the most abundant mammals that have diversified into every niche for vertebrates and dominated the world's terrestrial biotas in the Cenozoic. A critical event in mammalian history is the divergence of eutherians, the clade inclusive of all living placentals, from the metatherian-marsupial clade. Here we report the discovery of a new...
Article
Traditionally, the lacustrine deposits in Yixian County of Western Liaoning have been assigned to either “the Dakangpu Bed” of the Yixian Formation or the Jiufotang Formation. However, a 206Pb/238U age of 126.47 ± 0.87 Ma is newly obtained from the tuff sample (06051) of the lacustrine deposits in the Baitaigou fossil site of Potaizi village, Yixia...
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A new specimen of an enantiornithean bird from the Lower Cretaceous Xiagou Formation of Gansu Province, northwestern China, consists of an articulated distal left humerus, ulna, radius, carpus, and manus. The specimen may represent a primitive enantiornithean because it lacks a longitudinal sulcus on the radius, has incompletely fused alular and ma...
Article
A sexually mature individual of Darwinopterus preserved together with an egg from the Jurassic of China provides direct evidence of gender in pterosaurs and insights into the reproductive biology of these extinct fliers. This new find and several other examples of Darwinopterus demonstrate that males of this pterosaur had a relatively small pelvis...
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Viviparity (giving birth to live young) in fossil reptiles has been known only in a few marine groups: ichthyosaurs, pachypleurosaurs, and mosasaurs. Here, we report a pregnant specimen of the Early Cretaceous Hyphalosaurus baitaigouensis, a species of Choristodera, a diapsid group known from unequivocal fossil remains from the Middle Jurassic to t...
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The fossil record is a unique source of evidence for important evolutionary phenomena such as transitions between major clades. Frustratingly, relevant fossils are still comparatively rare, most transitions have yet to be documented in detail and the mechanisms that underpin such events, typified by rapid large scale changes and for which microevol...
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The definitive mammalian middle ear (DMME) is defined by the loss of embryonic Meckel’s cartilage and disconnection of the middle ear from the mandible in adults. It is a major feature distinguishing living mammals from nonmammalian vertebrates. We report a Cretaceous trechnotherian mammal with an ossified Meckel’s cartilage in the adult, showing t...
Article
An incomplete theropod skeleton including partial skull, mandibles, ilia was collected from the Early Cretaceous Jiufotang Formation of Kazuo County, western Liaoning Province. It can be estimated that this theropod may reach 9~10 meters in total length. It should be classified within Tyrannosauroidea by its tall premaxiUary body, median vertical r...
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A new ornithomimosaur from the Yixian Formation of Liaoning Province People's Republic of China is described. These beds are near the Jurassic-Cretaceous boundary. This specimen is interesting because it has several primitive characters for ornithomimosaurs such as teeth and a short first metacarpal. This taxon is placed in a phylogenetic analysis...
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The Yixian Formation, in Liaoning Province, northeastern China, has yielded abundant turtle remains which were described previously as Manchurochelys liaoxiensis. Study of a new collection in the Geological Museum of China and reexamination of previously studied IVPP collection allow us to assign this turtle to Ordosemys. Additional primitive featu...
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The new gigantic sauropod dinosaur Ruyangosaurus giganteus gen. et sp. nov. from the early Late Cretaceous Mangchuan Formation of Ruyang, Henan , China is described. It is characterized by a lower neural spine, lack of centroprezygapophyseal lamina, a large, irregularly triangular deep fossa on the lateral surface of the neural arch, the prezygodia...
Article
Two Chinese istiodactylid pterosaurs Liaoxipterus and Longchengpterus are re-described in detail. The hyoid apparatus of Liaoxipterus is also described. Based on the specimen (Longchengpterus), new characters of Nurhachius are added: a distinct ridge along the middle line on its ventral surface of the rostral portion of the skull, a distinct groove...
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The largest known flying organisms are the azhdarchid pterosaurs, a pterodactyloid clade previously diagnosed by the characters of their extremely elongate middle-series cervical vertebrae. The named species of the Azhdarchidae are from the Late Cretaceous. However, isolated mid-cervical vertebrae with similar dimensions and characters have been re...
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Tribosphenic molars of basal marsupials and placentals are a major adaptation, with the protocone (pestle) of the upper molar crushing and grinding in the talonid basin (mortar) on the lower molar. The extinct pseudo-tribosphenic mammals have a reversed tribosphenic molar in which a pseudo-talonid is anterior to the trigonid, to receive the pseudo-...
Article
A new dromaeosaurid dinosaur Luanchuanraptor henanensis gen. et sp. nov. is erected based on the following characters: about 24 posterior serrations per 5 millimeters on the posterior carnia of teeth; the proximal and posterior extensions of the haemal arch are short and trifurcated; the elongated prezygapophyses of the distal-most caudal vertebrae...
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A psittacosaurid dinosaur from western Liaoning, China, possessing a pathological fibula is described. The pathological fibula is significantly different from a normal fibula, being shorter and much stouter, and with a distinct swelling on the shaft. The swollen portion (representing a mass of necrotic bone) of the fibula indicates that the animal...
Article
A new compsognathid dinosaur, Sinocalliopteryx gigas gen. et sp. nov., is erected based on a complete skeleton from the Early Cretaceous Yixian Formation of western Liaoning, northeastern China. It shares the features with Huaxiagnathus orientalis in having a manus as long as the humerus plus radius, very large and subequally long manual claws I an...
Article
Gansus yumenensis is the first Mesozoic bird found in China. It was collected from the Xiagou Formation in northwestern Gansu, which is considered to be equivalent to the Early Cretaceous strata yielding the Jehol biota in western Liaoning. Based on some characters such as elongated phalanges and short claws with pointed flexor tubercles, Gansus yu...
Article
An incomplete gigantic sauropod femur was found in Ruyang, Henan. Judged by the size of its proximal end, the real length of the femur is probably more than 2 m; so it definitely belongs to a gigantic sauropod dinosaur. Although the femur is only preserved as a proximal portion and it is difficult to assign it to a certain generic or species level,...
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Although recent discoveries from Lower Cretaceous sediments in northeastern China have greatly improved our understanding of the initial stages of avian diversification in eastern Asia, the early evolution of Aves elsewhere on the continent remains poorly understood. In 2004, a collaborative field effort directed by personnel from the Chinese Acade...
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Three-dimensional specimens of the volant fossil bird Gansus yumenensis from the Early Cretaceous Xiagou Formation of northwestern China demonstrate that this taxon possesses advanced anatomical features previously known only in Late Cretaceous and Cenozoic ornithuran birds. Phylogenetic analysis recovers Gansus within the Ornithurae, making it the...
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Istiodactylus sinensis, sp. nov., from the Jiufotang Formation of Liaoning, People's Republic of China, is described on the basis of a single nearly complete and nearly osteologically adult specimen. This is the tenth pterosaur described from this formation and the eighteenth pterosaur species described from northeastern China in almost half as man...
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A docodontan mammaliaform from the Middle Jurassic of China possesses swimming and burrowing skeletal adaptations and some dental features for aquatic feeding. It is the most primitive taxon in the mammalian lineage known to have fur and has a broad, flattened, partly scaly tail analogous to that of modern beavers. We infer that docodontans were se...
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The issue about the Terrestrial Jurassic-Cretaceous Boundary in China (TJCBC) has long been one of the hot debated, complicated problems among Chinese geologists, and it is always related to the problem of the geological age of the Jehol Biota in China. In general, three opinions on this problem are summarized as follows: (1) Some scholars hold tha...
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The diagnostic features of Eopteranodon are amended on the basis of new material. The amended features are as follows: the neural spines in the mid cervical vertebrae are absent; the ratio of the length of the deltopectoral crest to the humerus length is approximately 0.25 ; and the length of the metacarpal IV is almost equal to the length of the s...
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A new partial skeleton of the Cretaceous “symmetrodontan” mammal Zhangheotherium quinquecuspedens from the Yixian Formation of Liaoning, China has shed light on the dental and skeletal features of this taxon. The new fossil is a juvenile individual of late growth stage, preserved with interesting features of the premolar replacement. This fossil al...
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A new genus and species of basal neoceratopsian dinosaur, Auroraceratops rugosus, is reported based on material from the Early Cretaceous Xinminpu Group in the Gongpoquan Basin of Gansu Province, China. Auroraceratops is represented by a nearly complete skull and low jaws, and different greatly from all other neoceratopsians by its considerable bre...
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The recent discovery of a pterosaur egg with embryonic skeleton and soft tissues from the Yixian Formation confirmed that the flying pterosaurs were oviparous. Here we describe another pterosaur egg whose exquisite preservation indicates that the shell structure was soft and leathery.