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RE: Microraptor Had Iridescent Plumage



I agree that there is no positive evidence of naked skin or scales preserved on 
the snout.

Do you agree with me that there is also no positive evidence of feathers on the 
tip of the snout?

In NGMC 91 (Dave) we see an orderly decrease in the size of the feathers - 
growing shorter rostrally. No more feathers are preserved by the time we reach 
the proximal border of the nostril. Sinornithosaurus is Microraptor's closest 
relative according to most phylogenies.

There are also no feathers preserved on the distal rostrum in any other 
specimen, be it Microraptor or any other taxon.

There are also none on birds.

Therefore don't you agree that the hypothesis that is most consistent with the 
evidence is that of a bare distal rostrum?


________________________________________
From: owner-DINOSAUR@usc.edu [owner-DINOSAUR@usc.edu] on behalf of David 
Marjanovic [david.marjanovic@gmx.at]
Sent: Friday, March 09, 2012 7:43 AM
To: dinosaur@usc.edu
Subject: Re: Microraptor Had Iridescent Plumage

> Good stuff; pretty decent press release and lovely art.

Oh yes. And lovely paper and lovely supplementary information, too!

> Too bad the sprawled the hindlimbs in the illustration...

They're not sprawled. Instead, the lower legs are rotated.

You can do that, I can do that -- the European honey buzzard can do that, and 
no other dinosaur can.

I hate it when such artistically great images are completely ruined by utter 
anatomical impossibilities. Now every time I show that picture to someone, I'll 
have to add that disclaimer!

The fingers are rotated, too: the claws should point into the page, not 
forwards.

And there's still no evidence for naked skin (or scales) on the snout.

I'd have made two drawings, one in dorsal view and one in lateral view, to show 
the fore- and hindwings. Lateral view would also allow showing a hand in palmar 
view.