Pterosaur plumage

  title={Pterosaur plumage},
  author={Liliana D’Alba},
  journal={Nature Ecology \& Evolution},
  • L. D’Alba
  • Published 17 December 2018
  • Biology
  • Nature Ecology & Evolution
Imaging of pterosaur skin reveals evidence of coloured feather-like structures, but whether these are homologous with true feathers is open to debate. 


Pterosaur integumentary structures with complex feather-like branching
Preservation in two anurognathid pterosaur specimens of morphologically diverse pycnofibres show diagnostic features of feathers, hitherto considered unique to maniraptoran dinosaurs, and preserved melanosomes with diverse geometries, which could imply that feathers had deep evolutionary origins in ancestral archosaurs.
New evidence on the colour and nature of the isolated Archaeopteryx feather.
The first evidence of colour from Archaeopteryx is reported based on fossilized colour-imparting melanosomes discovered in this isolated feather specimen, and reexamination of the feather's morphology leads it to interpret it as an upper major primary covert, contrary to previous interpretations.
The soft tissue of Jeholopterus (Pterosauria, Anurognathidae, Batrachognathinae) and the structure of the pterosaur wing membrane
Although the understanding of the mechanical properties of the wing membrane is hampered by the lack of knowledge regarding the composition of the actinofibrils, the configuration observed in Jeholopterus might have allowed subtle changes in the membrane tension during flight, resulting in more control of flight movements and the organization of the wings when the animal was at rest.
Bristles before down: A new perspective on the functional origin of feathers
A novel origin theory of feathers as bristles is advocated, which argues that facial feathers common among modern birds that function like mammalian tactile whiskers, and are frequently simple and hair‐like in form offer a feasible first stage in feather evolution.
Branched integumental structures in Sinornithosaurus and the origin of feathers
Observations of the filamentous integumental appendages of the basal dromaeosaurid dinosaur Sinornithosaurus millenii indicate that they are compound structures composed of multiple filaments that are unique to avian feathers, which strongly corroborate the hypothesis that the integumentals of SinORNithosaurus are homologous with avan feathers.
Structure and homology of Psittacosaurus tail bristles
It is shown that most bristles appear to be arranged in bundles and that they exhibit a pulp that widens towards the bristle base, and it is considered likely that the psittacosaur bristles are structurally and developmentally homologous to similar filamentous appendages of other dinosaurs.
A Jurassic ornithischian dinosaur from Siberia with both feathers and scales
A seemingly feathery nontheropod dinosaur from the Jurassic of Siberia shows that feathers were not unique to the ancestors of birds and may even have been quite widespread, and feathers may thus have been present in the earliest dinosaurs.
Feathered Dinosaurs and the Origin of Flight
The fossils of Liaoning represent a complex ecosystem creating a more complete picture of this particular age of dinosaurs than ever before. Life of the Early Cretaceous, 120 million years ago, was
Backscattered Electron Imaging of Fossils Exceptionally-Preserved as Organic Compressions
Abstract Backscattered electron imaging of fossils exceptionally-preserved as organic compressions reveals anatomical details that are not evident either under incident light or in secondary electron
An Early Cretaceous heterodontosaurid dinosaur with filamentous integumentary structures
Tianyulong extends the geographical distribution of heterodontosaurids to Asia and confirms the clade’s previously questionable temporal range extension into the Early Cretaceous period, and represents the first confirmed report, to the authors' knowledge, of filamentous integumentary structures in an ornithischian dinosaur.