Book Cover
Author Agnolín, Federico L.

Title Avian ancestors : a review of the phylogenetic relationships of the theropods unenlagiidae, microraptoria, anchiornis and scansoriopterygidae / Federico L. Agnolín, Fernando E. Novas
Published Dordrecht ; New York : Springer, [2013]
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Description 1 online resource
Series SpringerBriefs in earth system sciences, SpringerBriefs South American and the Southern Hemisphere, 2191-589X
SpringerBriefs in earth system sciences. South America and the Southern hemisphere.
Contents 1. Introduction -- 2. Materials and Methods -- 3. Systematic Palaeontology -- Paraves Sereno, 1997 -- Eumaniraptora Padian, Hutchinson, and Holtz, 1999 -- Averaptora new clade -- Unenlagiidae + Avialae clade -- Anchiornis + Xiaotingia +Avialae clade -- Anchiornis + Xiaotingia clade -- Avialae Gauthier, 1986 -- Ornithurae Haeckel, 1816 -- Avebrevicauda Paul, 2002 -- Oviraptorosauria + Scansoriopterygidae clade -- 4. Uncertain Averaptoran Theropods -- Introduction -- Luanchuanraptor henanensis -- Hulsanpes perlei -- Shanag agile -- Tianyuraptor ostromi -- Mahakala omnogova -- Jinfengopteryx elegans -- Unquillosaurus ceiballi -- Pamparaptor micros -- European Dromaeosaurids -- 5. Discussion -- Evolution of Feathers and Wings Among Basal Paravians -- Osteological and Integumental Modifications Related to the Origin of Flight -- Body Size Increase and Loss of Flying Capabilities Among Paravians -- Independent Origin of Flying Capabilities Among Paravians -- Averaptoran Radiation and Center of Origin of Birds -- Appendix 1: Character List -- Appendix 2: Re-Scored Data from Xu et al. (2008); Hu et al. (2009), and Agnolín and Novas (2011) Data Matrixes -- Appendix 3: Character Diagnoses for Selected Clades
Summary Although consensus exists among researchers that birds evolved from coelurosaurian theropods, paleontologists still debate the identification of the group of coelurosaurians that most closely approaches the common ancestor of birds. The last 20 years witnessed the discovery of a wide array of avian-like theropods that has considerably amplified the anatomical disparity among deinonychosaurians, some of which resemble Archaeopteryx more than Deinonychus. Among these newly discovered theropods that show remarkable bird-like characteristics are the four-winged theropods Microraptor and Anchiornis, and the unenlagiids Unenlagia, Buitreraptor, and Rahonavis. A bizarre group of minute-sized coelurosaurs, the Scansoriopterygidae, also exhibits some avian similarities that lead some authors to interpret them as more closely related to birds than other dinosaurs. With the aim to explore the phylogenetic relationships of these coelurosaurians and birds, we merged recently published integrative databases, resulting in significant changes in the topological distribution of taxa within Paraves. We present evidence that Dromaeosauridae, Microraptoria, Unenlagiidae, and Anchiornis + Xiaotingia form successive sister taxa of Aves, and that the Scansoriopterygidae are basal coelurosaurians not closely related to birds. The implications in the evolutionary sequence of anatomical characters leading to birds, including the origin of flight, are also considered in light of this new phylogenetic hypothesis
Analysis Paleontology
Evolution (Biology)
Morphology (Animals)
Animal Systematics/Taxonomy/Biogeography
Evolutionary Biology
Animal Anatomy / Morphology / Histology
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references
Subject Birds -- Evolution.
Form Electronic book
Author Novas, Fernando E.
ISBN 9400756364 (print)
9400756372 (electronic bk.)
9789400756366 (print)
9789400756373 (electronic bk.)