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Re: Microraptor Had Iridescent Plumage

On 3/9/2012 9:36 AM, Jason Brougham wrote:

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


Feathery snouts do seem an unlikely condition in beakless carnivores that eat prey large enough to be messy. Carrion birds AFAIK strongly support the underlying functional concept -- a bird (G. babatus) that specializes in bone-eating has a feathered head, and G. angolensis is likewise feathery -- the many vultures that specialize in accessing soft tissue in larger carcasses do not have feathers where they will routinely be coated w/ fluids.

Heh. Checking my perceptions about the generally featherless condition of vulture heads uncovered a prank -- typing "vultures" in the Wikipedia search box re-directs one to the page on "parliaments". :D