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Gymnotide
August 2nd, 2011, 11:19 PM
ITT: We found birds.
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/02/science/02fossil.html

tl;dr, we found another link between the Archaeopteryx and the modern bird. When we figured out that the Velociraptor had a feathery body (rather than a scaly one), we found steps to link it closer to the Archaeopteryx, which was the most bird-like dinosaur we knew. Now that we have a proto-bird, we're even closer to finishing our evolutionary lineage.

Conclusions drawn from this finding suggests that the Archaeopteryx is not the proto-bird, but rather a birdlike dinosaur; the true proto-bird is in the fossil we just found.

Other than providing more evidence for evolutionary taxonomy, it's nice to see that we're filling up our records so nicely. There's a lot of species out there, but I'm always excited to meet new ones.

Stormbringer
August 3rd, 2011, 12:35 PM
Oh god, It's like I'm 7 again.


http://dialgafans.pytalhost.de/Front/567.gif

This is pretty interesting. Liaoning Province in China is literally the proverbial gold mine for dinosaur fossils, I mean it seems like every single major new species comes from this area. As for our dear friend Archeopteryx, I had a feeling that eventually we'd find a more transitional fossil, this is pretty much true for the entire field of paleontology- just keep digging and eventually you'll have to rewrite the history books. Eventually, we may even find even older transitional fossils, perhaps as far back as the reptilian ancestor itself.