Palaeontology: Inside the oldest bird brain

  title={Palaeontology: Inside the oldest bird brain},
  author={Lawrence M. Witmer},
  • L. Witmer
  • Published 5 August 2004
  • Biology, Medicine
  • Nature
Did Archaeopteryx, the most primitive known bird, have ‘the right stuff’? Looking into its skull with advanced technology provides insight into the dinosaurian transition to birds, and the evolution of flight. 
Neurobiological approaches in vertebrate paleontology
The study of the central nervous system in extinct vertebrates is discussed and the functional structural features allow the use of the nervous system for the resolution of some difficult questions of vertebrate evolution. Expand
A Large Bird from the Early Cretaceous of China: New Information on the Skull of Enantiornithines
The histological characterization of CNUVB-0903 indicates that it was not yet a full-grown individual at the time of death, and supports previous evidence indicating that early in their history, enantiornithines were able to achieve relatively large sizes. Expand
Integrity principle of the evolution of associative centers in the vertebrate brain
It is demonstrated that in various taxonomic groups the possibilities of adaptive changes, as far as the brain is concerned, go beyond the scope of biological, topographical, and dynamic coordinations, typical for other scopes and systems. Expand
Cranial osteology of the Early Cretaceous Sapeornis chaoyangensis (Aves: Pygostylia)
The results of this study demonstrate that the postorbital bar, jugal bar, nasal, quadrate, and palate in Sapeornis show the plesiomorphic rigid articulations among birds. Expand
A Virtual Phytosaur Endocast and Its Implications for Sensory System Evolution in Archosaurs
A comparison with phylogenetically diverse archosaurian endocasts reveals that endocast morphologies are highly conserved within Pseudosuchia, regardless of Bauplan or ecology. Expand
Looking at Fossils in New Ways
Sometimes a fresh pair of eyes or a new method of analysis can yield new insights from the fossil record, which means not only searching for more fossils, but also reexamining those already discovered. Expand
Iodine-enhanced micro-CT imaging: methodological refinements for the study of the soft-tissue anatomy of post-embryonic vertebrates.
  • P. Gignac, N. Kley
  • Biology, Medicine
  • Journal of experimental zoology. Part B, Molecular and developmental evolution
  • 2014
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New evidence is provided suggesting that basal dromaeosaurid dinosaurs were four-winged animals and probably could glide, representing an intermediate stage towards the active, flapping-flight stage of proavians. Expand
An exceptionally preserved Lower Cretaceous ecosystem
Findings include feathered theropod dinosaurs and early birds, which provide additional, indisputable support for the dinosaurian ancestry of birds, and much new evidence on the evolution of feathers and flight. Expand
The avian nature of the brain and inner ear of Archaeopteryx
It is concluded that Archaeopteryx had acquired the derived neurological and structural adaptations necessary for flight and had also developed enhanced somatosensory integration with these special senses demanded by a lifestyle involving flying ability. Expand
Neuroanatomy of flying reptiles and implications for flight, posture and behaviour
The brain and vestibular apparatus in two pterosaurs are compared based on high-resolution computed tomographic (CT) scans from which they were constructed digital endocasts to shed light on adaptation to an aerial lifestyle. Expand
Vestibular evidence for the evolution of aquatic behaviour in early cetaceans
It is hypothesized that the unparalleled modification of the semicircular canal system represented a key ‘point of no return’ event in early cetacean evolution, leading to full independence from life on land. Expand
Dinosaurs of the Air: The Evolution and Loss of Flight in Dinosaurs and Birds
This book discusses the early evolution of flight, the science of Bird Origins, and the Great Extinction of the Mesozoic. Expand
Biomechanics in Evolution
Biomechanics and evolution - integrating physical and historical biology in the study of complex systems, George V. Lauder the mechanical design of fossil plants, Julian F.V. Vincent and GeorgeExpand