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Re: Flight capablities of Archie & Confucius? Not so good...

On Mon, May 17, 2010 at 12:22 AM, Tim Williams <tijawi@yahoo.com> wrote:
> So what business did _Archaeopteryx_ have evolving in the first place? ÂIt's 
> something I've been wondering about quite a lot...

Didn't it live on islands? Did it have to be that good?

Seriously, though, even if it was a dead end, it's similar to
something that spawned a very successful clade, so your question
holds. But it didn't have to be good by today's standards. In fact, it
didn't have to be great by its own day's standards. To survive, a
population just has to be "good enough" by the standards of the time.

Although, come to think of it -- wouldn't Archaeopteryx be one of the
earliest pan-avians we know of to have ornithoid eggshells? Might that
have conferred an advantage? (And as for the wings, there's the
"brooding hypothesis".)
T. Michael Keesey
Technical Consultant and Developer, Internet Technologies
Glendale, California