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RE: Bird reduce their "heating bills" in cold climates
--- On Mon, 7/5/10, GUY LEAHY <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
> From: GUY LEAHY <email@example.com>
> Subject: RE: Bird reduce their "heating bills" in cold climates
> To: "Tim Williams" <firstname.lastname@example.org>, "Dinosaur Mailing List"
> Date: Monday, July 5, 2010, 11:21 PM
> Furthermore, scales and feathers can co-occur on the same
> body parts:
The examples cited always show malformed feathers, and, or scales, suggesting a
biochemical miscommunication more than a reversal.
> It's entirely possible polar dinosaurs grew a coat of
> dinofuzz/feathers over the scales to keep warm during the
> dark winters, and seasonally shed this insulation when
> summer approached.
Possible? Yes. Probable? No. As I wrote earlier, it would involve dinosaurs
exhibiting a trait that we would have no example of today.
> Most birds have scales on the metatarsi, but willow
> ptarmigans have a coat of feathers which covers the scales,
> and this feather coat is seasonally shed from the ventral
> portion of the feet:
What the picture in that pdf doesn't show is that ptarmigans don't actually
have foot scales.
So growing winter snowshoes, and then dumping them in the summer is perfectly
> Some theropods also had feathered metatarsi:
Indeed, so many that they probably represent the plesiomorphic condition.