Blog
About

  • Record: found
  • Abstract: not found
  • Article: not found

Bird origins anew

The Auk

University of California Press

Read this article at

ScienceOpenPublisher
Bookmark
      There is no author summary for this article yet. Authors can add summaries to their articles on ScienceOpen to make them more accessible to a non-specialist audience.

      Related collections

      Most cited references 41

      • Record: found
      • Abstract: found
      • Article: not found

      Four-winged dinosaurs from China.

      Although the dinosaurian hypothesis of bird origins is widely accepted, debate remains about how the ancestor of birds first learned to fly. Here we provide new evidence suggesting that basal dromaeosaurid dinosaurs were four-winged animals and probably could glide, representing an intermediate stage towards the active, flapping-flight stage. The new discovery conforms to the predictions of early hypotheses that proavians passed through a tetrapteryx stage.
        Bookmark
        • Record: found
        • Abstract: found
        • Article: not found

        An Archaeopteryx-like theropod from China and the origin of Avialae.

         Kai Du,  Taek You,  Fenglu Han (2011)
        Archaeopteryx is widely accepted as being the most basal bird, and accordingly it is regarded as central to understanding avialan origins; however, recent discoveries of derived maniraptorans have weakened the avialan status of Archaeopteryx. Here we report a new Archaeopteryx-like theropod from China. This find further demonstrates that many features formerly regarded as being diagnostic of Avialae, including long and robust forelimbs, actually characterize the more inclusive group Paraves (composed of the avialans and the deinonychosaurs). Notably, adding the new taxon into a comprehensive phylogenetic analysis shifts Archaeopteryx to the Deinonychosauria. Despite only tentative statistical support, this result challenges the centrality of Archaeopteryx in the transition to birds. If this new phylogenetic hypothesis can be confirmed by further investigation, current assumptions regarding the avialan ancestral condition will need to be re-evaluated.
          Bookmark
          • Record: found
          • Abstract: found
          • Article: not found

          Fossilized melanosomes and the colour of Cretaceous dinosaurs and birds.

          Spectacular fossils from the Early Cretaceous Jehol Group of northeastern China have greatly expanded our knowledge of the diversity and palaeobiology of dinosaurs and early birds, and contributed to our understanding of the origin of birds, of flight, and of feathers. Pennaceous (vaned) feathers and integumentary filaments are preserved in birds and non-avian theropod dinosaurs, but little is known of their microstructure. Here we report that melanosomes (colour-bearing organelles) are not only preserved in the pennaceous feathers of early birds, but also in an identical manner in integumentary filaments of non-avian dinosaurs, thus refuting recent claims that the filaments are partially decayed dermal collagen fibres. Examples of both eumelanosomes and phaeomelanosomes have been identified, and they are often preserved in life position within the structure of partially degraded feathers and filaments. Furthermore, the data here provide empirical evidence for reconstructing the colours and colour patterning of these extinct birds and theropod dinosaurs: for example, the dark-coloured stripes on the tail of the theropod dinosaur Sinosauropteryx can reasonably be inferred to have exhibited chestnut to reddish-brown tones.
            Bookmark

            Author and article information

            Journal
            The Auk
            The Auk
            University of California Press
            00048038
            19384254
            January 2013
            January 2013
            : 130
            : 1
            : 1-12
            10.1525/auk.2013.130.1.1
            © 2013

            Comments

            Comment on this article