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Re: "real' feather



--Original Message--From: Alan Brush Date: 06 October 1998 22:34

I can't help thinking than any epidermal structure that consists of the feather (phi) type keratin, and is produced in a follicle, is a feather.
Developmentally and chemically, "Sinopelt" will have been just another form of feather, agreed.  However the structural difference between that, and any feather that has been used (maybe by ancestors) for flying is surely highly significant, and so far, easily distinguished.  Some types of feather, eg bristle, down, etc do not show the aerodynamic pattern of course, but no bird lacks some feathers which show it unmistakeably, even after 60 million years, or however long ratites have been flightless for.
 
JJ