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Re: The Aerodynamic Origin of Bird Flight




----- Original Message ----- From: "Tim Williams" <twilliams_alpha@hotmail.com>
To: <dinosaur@usc.edu>; <protoart@gmail.com>; <twilliams_alpha@hotmail.com>
Sent: Sunday, January 13, 2008 4:31 PM
Subject: RE: The Aerodynamic Origin of Bird Flight



Also, the statement "The pterosaurs are reptiles and have to warm up" may put you off-side with pterosaur experts, given that the presence of a fur-like body covering in some pterosaur taxa (e.g., _Sords pilosus_) suggests endothermic ability.

Interestingly enough, though pterosaurs are almost certainly endothermic, for the most part they use a flight style that would for the most part, work just as well if they were cold-blooded. With this exception, which I think is important. Cold-bloodedness would have hurt their ability to reach high altitudes assist in traveling long distances (the atmosphere cools substantially with altitude increase, limiting a cold-blooded animal's ability to function at higher altitudes).
JimC