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Re: Longipteryx chaoyangensis (Aves, Enantiornithes?)

> I think some early birds lack quill nodes on the ulna - like
Archaeopteryx. Rahonavis though has them. I think this character
(presence/absence of quill nodes) is variable in modern birds.<

Not exactly sure of your point, but all birds that fly have flight feathers
anchored to bone--that's how the lifting and thrusting forces are
transferred to the frame of the animal.  That adaptation (the ability to
transfer aerodynamic forces to the skeleton) >had< to appear prior to
flight, not after it. I'm still waiting for the first report of quill nodes
on some small flightless feathered theropod!