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Re: Feathering in coelurosaurs

Mary Nalasco wrote:
It seems probable to me that baby tyrannosaurs had feathers, but I'm
wondering about adults of small species like Alioramus, who are no bigger or
even smaller than some coelurosaurs of other groups, like Utahraptor. Is it
a question of metabolism, perhaps? Can more evolved coelurosaurs manage
feathers better?

As has already been mentioned, it isn't necessarily a question of metabolism (although the presence of feathers would certainly indicate perhaps some type of insulation for "warm-blooded" dinosaurs). Feathers may have simply served the purpose in dinosaurs of acting as diplay devices, useful for attracting mates. If this was indeed the case for the coelurosaurs, then even the larger forms like T.rex could have sported some form of showy feathers (in fact, I would imagine the young juveniles' feathers would have developed into quite an elegant display by the time the animal reached sexual maturity. Perhaps turning from a dull shade of grey to a bright orange or something).

- Jordan Mallon

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