Archaeopteryx

The Archaeopteryx

These creatures were a transition between Dinosauria and Avians.  They were a type of raptor.  They had dinosaur snouts, filled with tiny sharp teeth.  Also, they had claws on their wings.  They were capable of gliding but not flying.  Their bodies were completely covered in feathers, but their feet and face were bare.  Also, Archaeopteryxes had a long flexible reptilian tail with feathers.  They weighed about two pounds.  It was as big as the Common Raven with a tail 20 inches in length.  Now that is a long tail!  They had a hyperextensible toe called “The Killing Claw.”

Archaeopteryxes were carnivores.  They ate insects, small mammals, and reptiles.  They used their jaws to tear off flesh from prey.

THe first skeleton of this creature was discovered in Langenaltheim, Germany in 1861.  But, it was missing parts of the head and neck.  The most recent fossil was discovered in 1874 in Eichstatt, Germany.  It is more complete than the Langenaltheim specimen.

 

9 months ago

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