27 Apr '16, 10pm

How Did the Ancestors of Birds Survive the Apocalypse?

How Did the Ancestors of Birds Survive the Apocalypse?

Dinosaurs are still with us. Every sparrow you see carries on the legacy of creatures as fantastic as Tyrannosaurus and Triceratops . But this delightful truth also brings up one of the longest-standing mysteries in paleontology . . . why did the avian dinosaurs survive the asteroid when all their relatives died out? By doing dental work on million-year-old fossils, paleontologists think that they’ve finally found the plot twist: The ancestors ate seeds to ride out the apocalypse. The new study, published last week in Current Biology , gives an inkling to what happened at the very end of the dinosaurs' heyday, Royal Ontario Museum paleontologist and study author David Evans says. Previous work had hinted that the number of large, herbivorous dinosaur species were in decline up until about 66 million years ago, but no one had looked at smaller, fuzzier dinosaurs to see if t...

Full article: https://www.audubon.org/news/how-did-ancestors-birds-surv...

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