Can birds be considered real dinosaurs? That’s right

Beijing time january 22 news, the origin of modern birds can be traced back to the animal-footed sub-species, which is the dinosaur evolution tree is a mainly carnivorous species of branch. What do they have in common with a fast dragon or a powerful tyrannosaur, from sparrows to great dragonflies, ostriches to owls? All of these birds can be traced back to a class of bipedal dinosaurs, mainly carnivorous animals, known as the Orpoda.

Can birds be considered real dinosaurs? That's right

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The animal-footed dinosaur first appeared in the late Triassic period 231 million years ago.

The earliest birds had much in common with the animal-footed dinosaurs, including feathers and spawning. However, certain features , such as constant, dynamic flight , distinguish ancient birds from other animal-footed sub-species and ultimately define the branch of modern birds (although not all modern birds fly).

Today, all non-bird dinosaurs are extinct, but can birds be considered real dinosaurs? Bottom line: Yes.

“Birds are living dinosaurs, just like we are mammals,” said Julia Clarke, a paleontologist who studies flight evolution and a professor in the Department of Geological Sciences at the University of Texas at Austin. She said that although there are physiological differences between different mammals, each species in this group, whether existing or extinct, can find some of the same anatomical features from a common ancestor, as can birds.

“They’re firmly embedded in that part of the dinosaur family tree,” says Julia Clark. “

What makes a bird a bird?

Modern birds have feathers in their tails and bodies, unfused shoulder bones, no teeth, and longer forelimbs than hind limbs. They also have a bone plate near their tails, called the tail bone, which is located at the end of the spine and the triangular bone acts to support the tail feathers. Takuya Imai, an assistant professor at the Dinosaur Research Institute at Fukui Prefecture University in Japan, says other extinct animal-footed dinosaurs have one or more of these features, but only modern birds have all of them.

In a study published in the November 2019 issue of the journal Communications Biology, Mr. Ishii described a primitive bird found 120 million years ago in Japan. The researchers named it “Fukuipteryx prima”, which means “the wing of the original Fukui.” This is the earliest known bird with a tail bone, and the structure preserved in the fossils is very similar to that of modern chickens. In other words, some of the structures of modern birds can be traced back to their earliest ancestors.

However, Jingmai O’Connor, a palaeontologist at the Institute of Paleontology and Paleoanthropology at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, says primitive birds and non-bird-footed sublime dinosaurs still have much in common.

In fact, compared with modern birds, early birds were very much like dinosaurs. Some animals have long, reptile-like tails, teeth and claws on their wings, he said. Moreover, many non-bird-footed sub-species dinosaurs have real feathers, which have a middle feather axis, and feathers on both sides with a hooking of each other.

Julia Clark says palaeontologists distinguish animal populations primarily by accurately measuring subtle changes in bones and other fossil body tissues, including “small lumps and nodules (circular bumps on bones) associated with recombinant muscle groups.” The morphological data is converted into numbers and then processed by algorithms to determine the kinship between animals, he explains. By using these algorithms in the genetic taxonomy system, palaeontologists can distinguish between ancient birds and their animal-footed sub-species relatives.

The first bird.

Archaeopteryx has long been considered the earliest and most primitive bird, living 150 million years ago and its fossils are found in what is now southern Germany. The animal weighs about 1 kg and is about 50 cm long. Fossil evidence suggests that its tail and body have feathers. The shape of the forelimbs and feathers indicates that ancestral birds have the ability to fly dynamically, a feature of most modern birds. However, unlike today’s birds, ancestral birds retain unique features, such as the claws at the tip of their wings. With the fossils of the near-bird dragons, Xiaoting dragons and Sugon birds, which are older than the archezoa and more structurally close to the present birds, the status of the ancestral birds in the history of bird evolution has been shaken.

Fossils of birds from the early Cretaceous period (between 145.5 million and 65.5 million years ago) have been found in northeastern China, such as Confuciusornis, which lived 125 million years ago with gills and long tail feathers. A 2013 report said some of the fossils even had myelin, a spongy tissue found in sexually mature females.

Another fossil evidence links ancient birds to modern birds through their digestive sons, the earliest known bird pellets. About 120 million years ago, a Cretaceous bird found in China coughed up a large group of indigestible fish bones.

Fly, birds, fly!

A striking feature of birds is their ability to fly, which requires their large forelimbs to be covered with asymmetrically shaped feathers and constrained with strong muscles, mr. Nie said. “The most likely of the branches that have evolved into birds is the Troodontidae, a species of bird-like animal-footed sub-species, that separates birds from their nearest non-bird dinosaurs, possibly toothed dragons,” she said.

Then, after evolving the ability to fly, the small bones of the birds’ forelimbs “reduced and fused together to form this reinforced structure that supports the wing feathers,” says Julia Clark. She points out that in the late Cretaceous period, after the extinction of non-bird dinosaurs, birds continued to evolve and, more and more, developed more flight-related unique features, such as the elongated structure of the sternum (keel), and powerful pectoral muscles that could power wing flight.

“You can see that the larger and larger pectoral muscles are connected to this thick keel. This comes after the evolution of flight capability, and it also exists in existing birds,” Clark said. Today, there are about 10,000 species of birds in the world. Small as hummingbirds, as big as ostrich; Despite this, they are still the same as the animal-footed sub-species, which hatched primitive birds 150 million years ago.

So, if you want to know what dinosaurs were like when they were walking on Earth, don’t look too far, just pay attention to the seagulls staring at your fries on the beach, or the pigeons in the park eating breadcrumbs.