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Re: Ruffled feathers

Paul Davis wrote:

>No, what I am saying is that the evidence (albeit negative evidence and
>from a pathetic statistical sample size) shows that Archaeopteryx and
>Compsognathus did not have body contour feathers.  Most people believe
>because Archae is a "bird" it must have had a feathered body.  All I am
>pointing out is that there is no evidence for that hypothesis.
>Dr. Paul G. Davis

According to Feduccia there is, for Archaeopteryx anyway.  On p. 31 of his
new book he illustrates a drawing of the Berlin specimen, made sometime
prior to 1879 by one F.A. Schwartz, clearly "showing the presence of contour
feathers on various parts of the body, including the throat, back, breast,
and legs, which were apparently later prepared away."  There also seems to
be a tuft of feathers behind the skull, which may indicate a crest; Feduccia
restores the bird this way.  This letter was discovered in 1983; apparently
it was sent to Marsh as part of an offer to sell the Berlin specimen and
other fossils to Yale for $10,000.
Ronald I. Orenstein                           Phone: (905) 820-7886 (home)
International Wildlife Coalition              Fax/Modem: (905) 569-0116 (home)
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