Saturday, September 26, 2009

Birds Come From Dinosaurs

I taught my 3-year-old son that birds evolved from dinosaurs and "birds come from dinosaurs" has become one of his favorite science facts ("gravity makes you go down" and "mars is a red planet" are some others). Now there's more confirmation of that extraordinary theory as fossils of feathered dinosaurs have been found in China. Researcher Xu Xing: "The fossils provide confirmation that the bird-dinosaur hypothesis is correct, and supports the idea that birds descended from theropod dinosaurs (the group of predatory dinosaurs that includes allosaurus and velociraptor)." The fossils predate archaeopteryx, the formerly oldest bird/dinosaur. We discussed other bird-like dinosaurs as part of the Extinct Series.

(image credit: impression of Achiornis huxleyi, Hu Dongyu/AP)