domenica 4 novembre 2012

BBC Nature Prehistoric Life: EPIDEXIPTERYX HUI (Zhang et al, 2008)

For many reasons Epidexipteryx is a remarkable little dinosaur. A single, well preserved, pigeon-sized skeleton was found in China's fossil-rich Daohugou area and reveal...
ed to the world in 2008. Epidexipteryx had four long ribbon-like display feathers on its tail, almost certainly used to attract a mate or threaten an enemy.

Being covered in short, simple body feathers to keep warm Epidexipteryx lacked the flight feathers seen in other bird-like dinosaurs. This strongly suggests that feathers were used for ornamentation long before flight. Epidexipteryx lived between 152 and 168 million years ago, in the mid to late Jurassic Period. Many of its other features suggest a life in the trees hunting insects, safely away from hungry predators on the ground. | REFERENCES: ©Nature - Zhang, Fucheng; Zhou, Zhonghe; Xu, Xing; Wang, Xiaolin and Sullivan, Corwin. "A bizarre Jurassic maniraptoran from China with elongate ribbon-like feathers".©Science Blog #Tetrapod Zoology #Epidexipteryx: bizarre little strap-feathered maniraptoran

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