Tuesday, July 12, 2011

New Thinking might be for the Birds

An age-old question has gained a new twist with new theories on how modern birds & dinosaurs have much more in common than previously thought. Assumptions about the fossil record has been called in question by new discoveries, particularly the belief that certain dinosaurs are more closely related to birds than to modern lizards.

Kentucky Fried T-Rex anyone? One study has concluded that protein from T-Rex collagen is more closely related to collagen protein found in birds than it is to collagen protein found in crocodiles & alligators. This adds to previous skeletal evidence attesting to a dinosaur / bird common ancestor.
With fossils found in China of "feathered" dinosaurs, the distinction between what was bird, what was dinosaur, is becoming even more blurred. So much so that new theory's have been put forth that has even spawned revisions of how dinosaurs may have looked & behaved.

Old science textbooks once showed drab green dinosaurs with thick elephant hide, or alligator scales, and described them much like large, slow herds of prehistoric cows.

But adding bird-like qualities, the look and feel is now quite different... dinosaurs now have plumage.

It's like an artist pallet has been applied. Bold colors, spots & stripes, like what is found in the bird world is now applied to dinosaurs. Plus, like birds, a deftness & quick inquisitiveness, now define a dino's movement. Two
Velociraptors in a modern kitchen in the movie Jurassic Park
did more to change our perceptions of how dinosaurs could behave, than anything else.

It's still a lot of speculation, but from it all, a more realistic image of these ancient creatures is emerging. A new image about dinosaurs has been hatched.

1 comment:

  1. Does this means that we used to have feathers also? Cool.


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