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Did most (or all) dinosaurs have feathers?

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Here’s Discover:

A new dinosaur is ruffling a few feathers in the ongoing debate over when and why dinosaurs evolved plumage — and which dinosaurs were rocking the feathered look.

Feathers have been associated with several dinosaurs directly ancestral to birds. Additional studies have determined that some non-avian theropod dinosaurs — not directly ancestral to birds but still closely related — also had various types of plumage. Based on an older dinosaur not related to birds that was recently unearthed in Siberia, however, researchers believe many more dinosaurs — possibly all or most of them — had feathers. The newly described Siberian dinosaur, Kulindadromeus zabaikalicus, also helps paleontologists understand why feathers evolved at all.

It probably doesn’t help us understand “why feathers evolved at all” because of all the possible reasons they might have done, if this interpretation turns out to be correct.

It would be somewhat like bipedalism in humans. It is hard to choose between the advantages.

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One Reply to “Did most (or all) dinosaurs have feathers?

  1. 1
    PaV says:

    For quite some time now, I’ve thought that the majority, if not the entirety, of dinosaurs had feathers.

    My only hesitation was that there didn’t seem to be any indication of the feathers being preserved when fossilization of the dinosaur takes place. This still bothers me.

    OTOH, if you look at what the outside skin of dinosaurs is supposed to look like, it looks exactly like a plucked chicken.

    I’m sure this will be battled back-and-forth for ages. Hopefully some definitive find will settle the matter.

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