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Re: flapping from gliding



In article <199610111837.NAA07218@juliet.ucs.indiana.edu>, Jeffrey
Martz <martz@holly.ColoState.EDU> wrote:

>     Ruben made the suggestion that Archaeoptery was a "ground up" 
>ectothermic flier.  He asserts that reptilian muscle has (more? better) 
>mitochondria, which allow greater bursts of energy than mammals are 
>capable of.  With these, Archaeopteryx may have been able to produce the 
>thrust needed for a ground takeoff.  I can't remember the metabolic 
>details, its been about six months since I read his paper.
>     I have heard objections to this idea, including the claim that the 
>wrist in Archaeopteryx was not reinforced as it is in modern birds, so 
>the extra burst needed for takeoff couldn't have been supported by the wrist.

How feasible is ectothermy for a sudden burst of energy in the
presence of body feathers ? Feather is one of the best insulators.
Would it not impede heat flow inwards just as it does for the flow
outwards ?

Gautam Majumdar                 gautam@majumdar.demon.co.uk