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Re: Longisquama feathers???



Jeff Hecht wrote:

>Two independent analyses -- Jones et al and Hans-Dieter Sues -- say the
enlongated scales (or whatever they are) were attached to muscles on the
back. They were not for flapping flight. They may have been unfolded for
gliding.<

I'm not sure they would be very useful for gliding if they were attached to
soft tissue at only one point.  It would be energetically expensive since
the lifting force would have to pass to the animal's frame through tightly
contracted muscles.  If these things were membranous an analogy might be
made to the flying fish, which glides by holding its pectoral fins
horizontally rigid after launching itself (I don't think the pectoral fins
of flying fish have skeletal anchors).

Interesting critter, though.  I'd like to see a photo of the whole fossil as
well.

PTN