Trove of Dinosaur and Bird Feathers Preserved in Amber Offers Novel Evolutionary Insights

Trove of Dinosaur and Bird Feathers Preserved in Amber Offers Novel Evolutionary Insights

Alisa Opar
Published: 09/15/2011

An isolated barb from a white belly feather of a modern grebe, illustrating coiled barbule bases comparable to those in the Cretaceous specimen. In both cases, the coiling is a structural adaptation that allows the feather to absorb water. Image: Science/AAAS

 
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------


The brown color is produced by pigments within the amber-encased feather. Image: Science/AAAS

 
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Sixteen clumped feather barbs. Image: Science/AAAS

 
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Six pigmented feather barbs. Image: Science/AAAS

 
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Isolated, unpigmented feather barb and a mite. Image: Science/AAAS

  
Related stories:

Using scanning electron microscopy, researchers found pigment-bearing structures incased in the proto-feathers of non-avian dinosaur fossils.
 
Researchers have identified the colors of individual feathers belonging to Anchiornis huxleyi, a four-winged dinosaur of the late Jurassic.

Add comment

Login to post comments