When you think of an animal with wings, you usually think of something that can fly right? Bird is one of the first things that pops in my head, and when most of us think of birds, we usually think of birds that fly.
But not all birds fly. Of course, out of all the birds that can’t fly, what’s the first thing that comes to mind. Penguin? Ostrich? Kiwi?
Then there’s another category (wait, there’s more?).
Those are the birds that don’t usually fly, the sort of bird that we’re always a bit surprised to hear can actually fly.
Like turkeys. 🙂
So how does this apply to prehistoric critters? Well, there are times when paleontologists aren’t so sure if a bird or other feathered dinosaur could fly. And then there are the times when paleontologists are so sure something could not fly, but then later on down the road new evidence shows up that it might…
So how can you tell for sure?
This is where the guessing game gets fun. We take a look at all the evidence we have, look at modern animals to get more insight on certain relevant details, and then propose our best hypothesis.
Next week, we’ll take a look at one of these discombobulating critters. Until then, enjoy the adorkable awkwardness of a hoatzin clambering about (a lovely bird of the South American Amazon). Landings don’t look like their strong point. 😛
Quick Question: What’s the first bird you think of when I say “bird”? I’ve got kiwis and penguins on the brain since I’ve written this post, but I do love the little songbirds that sing around our yard. I’d love to hear from you in the comments!
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