Under microscopes the scientists can see the fossilized shapes of melanosomes, organelles that provide pigment via melanin. Julia Clarke, an associate professor of paleontology at the University of Texas at Austin said that "This means a color-patterning function—in the early evolution of feathers in dinosaurs”.
Fossils have revealed a lot about the lives of dinosaurs, but researchers always used to think that the fossil record couldn't show what color they were. This implies that fossils tend to preserve an animal's hard parts, like bones and teeth, and not soft parts like skin.
But feathers are made of tough proteins. "And, in fact, they can survive even in conditions where other internal organs, such as muscles and guts and brains and so on, will disappear," says Benton.
"When you look at the feathers, you don't know what the colors were. The feathers are a mixture of brownish colors," says Benton. "They're just preserved either as sort of dirty, whitish, beige kind of color and a kind of darker, equally dirty kind of brownish color."For the first time ever, we have evidence, we believe fairly watertight evidence, of the original color," says Benton.