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Re: Confuciusornis and other feathered beasts

On Sun, 6 Jun 1999 UNION4884@aol.com wrote:

> I note that "The Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs" refers to Confuciusornis as a 
> 'toothless bird'.  In other places, I read that it is a feathered dinosaur (I 
> assume this means non-avian dinosaur).   Could someone tell me if 
> Confuciusornis (as well as Caudipteryx and  Protoarchaeopteryx) are 
> considered  "non-avian feathered dinosaurs" by dinosaur paleontologists.  I'm 
> assuming Sinosauropteryx is unequivocally a non-avian dinosaur with some kind 
> of  feathers.  Right?

_Confuciusornis_ is avian. The rest are probably not. _Sinosauropteryx_ is
a compsognathid, _Protarchaeopteryx_ is probably a maniraptoran of some
kind, and _Caudipteryx_ may be related to oviraptorosaurs.

I think the current consensus on _Confuciusornis_'s place is:


I have also seen it placed as sister taxon to _Archaeopteryx, and at the
root of Enantiornithes, but never outside Aves.

--T. Mike Keesey                                    <tkeese1@gl.umbc.edu>
WORLDS                                  <http://www.gl.umbc.edu/~tkeese1>
THE DINOSAURICON                               <http://dinosaur.umbc.edu>