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Re: dinosaur endothermy (long)



On Wed, 11 Dec 1996, Stan Friesen wrote:

> From: GSP1954@aol.com (Greg Paul)
> 
>  > Feathered dinosaurs - ... In any case, the presence of a
>  > feathery body covering if confirmed will be powerful evidence for
>  > endothermy over a reliance on the environment for body heat.
> 
> Maybe.  This depends on the distribution of the feathers in the body.
> 
> So far I have only heard reports of feathers along the nape of the
> neck and the back on this new possibly feathered dinosaur.  If this
> is indeed the only part of the specimen with feathers, and if there
> is no taphonomic reason to suspect preferential preservation, then
> it is invalid to conclude endothermy from this evidence.

There *are* more traces, just of the *imprints* not the feathers 
themselves, and on the underside of the neck. Presumably the rest of the 
feathers are on the counterslab. For whatever reason, feathers are mainly 
preserved in the plane of the fossil, however- the same happens in some 
birds preserved face down, you seem to only get the feathers around their 
sides. 
        As far as I know I am the only person who has noticed this, or at 
least has noticed this and bothered to tell anyone. Also notice that 
Confuciusornis' insulatory pelage is inferred from insulation found only 
on the legs. So the drawings in NY times are wrong, as far as I can tell.