[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index][Subject Index][Author Index]

Can logical reasoning support the feathered nonavian dinosaur theory?



To all:

I had another notion about the idea of "fluffy" dinosaurs.

OK, suppose the theory that birds evolved from theropod dinosaurs was TRUE.
 This would mean the following.

Birds are warm-blooded and have feathers, and possessed such traits as far
back as the Cretaceous.  They apparently did not evolve these traits by
themselves, so they must have inherited them from their ancestor(s), nonavian
dinosaurs.  Obviously, endothermy was not an adaptation that evolved
overnight, so it must have been evolving in dinosaurs relatively far back
(how far, who knows?).  And such complicated structures as feathers obviously
did not sprout overnight, so they must have been evolving with the earliest
of dinosaurs, since Archaeopteryx, from the late Jurassic, bore fully evolved
avian feathers.  Feathers probably did not evolve specifically for flight (if
a scaley dinosaurian wanted the adaptation of flight right there and then, it
would most likely have gone the way of pterosaurs and chiropterans with skin
membranes and elongated fingers), since evolution would probably not go out
of its way to develop scales into such complicated things as feathers for a
purpose that had simpler and more practical alternatives.  

Endothermy, I guess, must have developed first, and then scales began their
evolution into feathers to assist the heat regulation process; the vast
majority of relatively small (like the ancestors of dinosaurs and many early
dinosaurs) endotherms today have insulation, whether it be fur, feather, fat,
or clothing.  So, as this theory goes, many early dinosaur bore
proto-feathers (coverings probably decreased in size as species evolved into
larger animals until the amount of insulation was nil) and the dinosaurs that
were small enough to need them continued to evolve them into more efficient
structures.  

And perhaps somewhere along the line, a certain kind of dinosaur had a new
for flight adaptations.  If evolution was an entity, it might think, "Well,
why evolve membranes and elongated fingers for this dinosaur if it already
carries structures that, developed a bit more, could easily do the job?"  So,
feathers evolved for flight purposes in that group of dinosaurs and, as the
need arose, gliding developed into powered flight and anatomical features
changed to make these animals more efficient in their niche.  Then, finally,
we get birds.

This is almost entirely speculation, but I have thought it out quite a bit
and it makes sense to ME.  I simply cannot see how birds could evolve from
arboreal reptiles when all of the evidence points to ATONT (aka BADD).  Flame
me all you want, supporters of BEFAR (birds evolved from arboreal reptiles),
but I won't show any disbelief in ATONT or SDWF (sidd-wiff) (some dinosaurs
were feathered) until there is solid evidence.

Rachel Clark