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110 myo Web Footed Bird Tracks



>From the current issue of Science News.

 Early web-footed bird made impression
 Researchers have discovered the fossil tracks of an
 otherwise unknown bird in 110-million-year-old sediments, which pushes
 back evidence of web-footed birds by at least 25 million years.

Science News only lists the references and sources

 http://www.sciencenews.org/20000812/note7ref.asp

but this also has a link to the abstract in Naturwissenschaften

 http://link.springer.de/link/service/journals/00114/bibs/0087006/00870256.htm

 Abstract We describe the oldest tracks of web-footed birds from the Early
 Cretaceous in South Korea. The tracks are characterized by a wide
 divarication angle and a long reversed hallux. The web is semipalmate
 and restricted to the proximal portion of the three forward digits. The 
 tracks from the Early Cretaceous in South Korea are smaller than those of
 the Late Cretaceous, therefore confirming the trend of size increasing in
 the early evolution of birds as shown by skeletal fossils. The discovery
 of web-footed tracks with abundant non-web-footed tracks
 indicates that there was a considerable diversification of
 shore birds as early as the Early Cretaceous. 


The article is available in Adobe format.