STL Science Center

STL Science Center

04 July 2015

Mimic That Bird

Paleoart in the modern era is all feathered out. There is a variety of reasons for that, not the least of which is the discovery of more and more fossils containing feathers of various kinds and therefore different states of feather evolution. Feather development and feather evolution are very interesting topics. They are topics that one might easily associate with a Chinese bird mimic, understandably. The fact that these omnivorous (herbivore and insectivore most likely) beaked runners were covered in feathers is, in this image, taken as a sure thing. The extent of feathers may have been less if we assume that Sinornithomimus was in fact a highly cursorial animal. The ability to run fast and with high maneuvaribility would likely require less downy fluffiness. However, it is hard to say if this may have been the condition during the nesting season or if this was the feathering condition and Sinornithomimus was actually more of a pacer than a sprinter. There are exceptions to the rule of course, like Cassowaries.
By Michael B.H.

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