Fact Check

200-Million-Year Old Dinosaur Egg Hatches in Berlin Museum

Rumor: A 200-million-year old dinosaur egg recently hatched in a Berlin museum.

Published March 9, 2014


Claim:   A 200-million-year old dinosaur egg recently hatched in a Berlin museum.


Example:   [Collected via e-mail, March 2014]

Someone on my Facebook posted that a 200 million year old dinosaur egg hatched in Berlin due to a malfunctioning heating unit. The egg was supposedly fossilized. It is reported to be the first dinosaur in 100 million years.


Origins:   On 20 February 2014, the World News Daily Report web site published an article positing that a 200-million-year old dinosaur egg had recently hatched in a Berlin museum due to the effects of a malfunctioning heating unit:

A malfunction with the heating system of the Museum für Naturkunde (or Museum of Natural History) had some unforeseen consequences, as a Gasosaurus egg dating from the Jurassic period ended up hatching, giving birth to the first dinosaur to see the daylight in more than 100 million years.

The egg which was believed to be petrified was preserved in a small storage room situated right next to the boiler room. When the system started overheating a few weeks ago, it seems to have surprisingly initiated the incubation process, leading the egg to hatch.

"This is an incredible opportunity for science," explains Gunther Warburg, paleobiologist at the museum. "The Gasosaurus is classified as a carnivorous tetanuran dinosaur of the therapod family originating from China. It remained a mystery because all we had to study upon were a few remains. But now we have a live one! I feel like I'm in Jurassic Park the movie! explains the specialist, visibly enthusiast[ic].

Soon afterwards links and excerpts referencing this item were being circulated via social media, with many of those who encountered it mistaking it for a genuine news article. However, that article was just another spoof from World News Daily Report, a fake news web site whose stock in trade is publishing fantastically fictional stories such "Giant Housecat Now Available on Market" and "Apple Announces Release of Paranormal Communication Application."

Last updated:   28 June 2015

David Mikkelson founded the site now known as snopes.com back in 1994.

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