[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index][Subject Index][Author Index]
RE: The Men Who Stare At New Papers
> In the evolution of flight in theropods, the key word is
> "exaptation". Many flight-related features that we see
> in birds likely evolved originally for other purposes, such
> as the furcula ("wishbone"), long forelimbs, pneumatic
> bones, enlarged breastbone (sternum), and of course
> feathers. All these features came to be incorporated
> into the avian flight apparatus (probably in a stepwise
> fashion), but they probably didn't begin that way.
I thought flight (gliding or powered) came before the enlarged breastbone, and
that primitive birds (which clearly could at least glide) didn't have them?
> For example,
> are these features perhaps correlated with reinforcing
> feather attachment? It was once assumed that the
> presence of quill nodes along the ulna was an exclusively
> flight-related character - until they turned up in
Unless, of course, Velociraptor had flying/gliding ancestors / was secondarily
flightless, which appears likely.