Dinobirds - September 29th

Ever since I remember, I knew dinosaurs were extinct. The discussion was how they disappeared not if. And even though there is no final word about it, the consensus is that dinosaurs suffered from a series of dramatic changes in the climates supporting their voracious appetites and necessities.

However, evolution is hard to predict. So a hypothesis started ringing the bells of science and modern scientists claimed since the 19th century that birds were the living descendants of dinosaurs, and ever since the discussion has been in place, supported mostly by the discovery of fossils such as the Archaeopteryx, strongly linking dinosaurs and birds.

Besides, it doesn't take much comparing an ostrich with the image of a velociraptor, they are about the same size, strong legs for running, long neck and elongated snout, etc, etc. Of course, that is out of my imagination, but it's not difficult to see the resemblance, moreover when we talk about certain key bones being conserved in both animals.

Anyway, PLoS just published a study done in a Aerosteon riocoloradensis, a dinosaur that lived 85 million years ago in Argentina and that possessed a bird-like respiratory system. A very interesting report that tells us about the "invention" in nature of a structure later exploited by a different species. Related or not? Probably, until we have a certain anser these reports bring us something good to read.

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