date, five non-avian feathered dinosaurs have been discovered. They represent
animals from three species: Therizinosaurs, Oviraptorosaurs and Deinonychosaurs.
"Chinese Lizard Wing"
in 1996, this was the first dinosaur specimen to be found that shows traces of
downy plumage. The animal has a fur-like covering running along its spine. Most
significantly it is also the least bird-like dinosaur to have traces of proto-feathers,
indicating that this integument originated long before flight. |
ornithomimosaurs, troodontids, and even tyrannosaurs appear to be more closely
related to birds than sinosauropteryx was, meaning they were all probably feathered
"First Ancient Wing"
This poorly known
specimen is thought by some to be a bird however the structure of its arms and
feathers indicate it could not fly. Others
are certain its a primitive maniraptor dinosaur. It has clearly developed feathers.
dinosaur has the most bird-like feathers yet discovered. They are prominent on
its hands and on the tip of its tail. It would appear that Caudipteryx feathers
even posessed the hooks which keeps the "wing" integrity that is vital
for flight, even though this animal could never have flown. It is also one of
several dinosaur types which has evolved a beak.
forth non-avian feathered dinosaur to be discovered. It had an integument similar
to sinosauropteryx but longer - 5cm on average, up to 7cm with branched structures
at the end.|
"Chinese Bird Lizard"
This animal was the first proof that
Deinonychosaurs had feathers. Of all the non-avian dinosaurs found it was the
most closely-related to birds and its shoulder joins have features similar to
that this animal has more flight characteristics than more advanced deinonychosaurs
lends credence to the idea that some coelurosaurs are descended from flighted
dinosaurs - ie birds.