Feathers and ‘feather-like’ integumentary structures in Liaoning birds and dinosaurs

Authors

  • Zhang Fucheng,

    Corresponding author
    1. Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China
    2. Department of Earth Sciences, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK
    • Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 142 Xi-Wai-Da-Jie, Beijing 100044, China.
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  • Zhou Zhonghe,

    1. Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China
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  • Gareth Dyke

    1. School of Biology and Environmental Science, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland
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Abstract

We provide an overview of the known feather and other ‘feather-like’ integumentary structure types known to-date in the birds and dinosaurs from the Cretaceous rocks of Liaoning, NE China. These feather-types are classified and compared with similar structures seen in Mesozoic and extant birds. We consider that integumentary feathers and ‘feather-like’ structures fall within two major structural categories (‘shafted’ and ‘non-shafted’). Comments are also made on the possible aerodynamic or insulating function of leg and tail feathers in Mesozoic birds and theropods. Copyright © 2006 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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