A modern dinosaur genus named 'eternal sleeper' was buried alive in China around 125 million years ago when an ancient volcano exploded and trapped a couple in an underwater burrow.
Around 125 million years ago, a pair of dinosaurs were resting in burrows when a nearby volcano erupted, bringing lava down the valley and trapping them in an underground pit.
After farmers in China found in their final resting place the perfectly preserved animals, which were an obscure animal, the tale has now been brought to life.
As they were buried alive, paleontologists found their eyes were closed, labeling them Changmiania liaoningensis-which in Chinese means' everlasting sleeper.'
Because of the posture of the bones, dinosaurs are thought to have died from asphyxiation, toxins and infections.
Farmers working in the province of Liaoning in northeastern China discovered the fossils.
'It is tentatively believed that both specimens of Changmiania liaoningensis were unexpectedly stuck while sleeping in a collapsing underground burrow, which would explain their flawless lifelike postures and the complete absence of signs of weathering and scavenging,' reads the report in PeerJ.
Researchers found the two were laying on the ground with their eyes closed, as if they died in their sleep.
Markings on their hip bones suggest they burrowed, leading experts to believe they were sleeping underground when the eruption occurred.
The dinosaurs were about three feet in length when alive and each had long, flexible tails, along with the ability to walk upright on its hind legs.
The creatures also had had shovel-shaped snouts, which would have helped with digging swiftly and efficiently.
The neck and forearm were short but strong, and its shoulder blades resembled those of modern burrowing animals.
The team note also that the tails of the dinosaurs had been stretched out due to stiffness.
The area is also covered with debris from an ancient volcanic eruption, along with fossils of other creatures that got in its way.