Science tidbits for July 2, 2012
Lots of tidbits, lots of links, enough to make a few tidbytes, even (8 tidbits = 1 tidbyte).
Feathers may have been an early adaptation, perhaps even basal, of Saurischian dinosaurs (which includes therapod dinosaurs), appearing so early in the evolutionary tree that many therapod dinosaurs (if not most) may have had feathers. Saurischian dinosaurs are one of the two major orders of dinosaurs, the other being Ornithischia, both named for the structure of their pelvic bones. Saurischian dinos have a lizard like hipbone, while Ornithischia has a bird like hipbone. Interestingly, it is the Saurischian group that is thought to have given rise to birds.
What kind of feathers, though? There are eight feather types that are documented within modern and extinct birds, all the way back to feathered dinosaurs.
Quoting wikipedia’s article on Feathers > Evolutionary stages
Feather evolution was broken down into the following stages by…
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