Document Detail

From extant to extinct: locomotor ontogeny and the evolution of avian flight.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  22304966     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Evolutionary transformations are recorded by fossils with transitional morphologies, and are key to understanding the history of life. Reconstructing these transformations requires interpreting functional attributes of extinct forms by exploring how similar features function in extant organisms. However, extinct-extant comparisons are often difficult, because extant adult forms frequently differ substantially from fossil material. Here, we illustrate how postnatal developmental transitions in extant birds can provide rich and novel insights into evolutionary transformations in theropod dinosaurs. Although juveniles have not been a focus of extinct-extant comparisons, developing juveniles in many groups transition through intermediate morphological, functional and behavioral stages that anatomically and conceptually parallel evolutionary transformations. Exploring developmental transitions may thus disclose observable, ecologically relevant answers to long puzzling evolutionary questions.
Ashley M Heers; Kenneth P Dial
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.; Review     Date:  2012-02-01
Journal Detail:
Title:  Trends in ecology & evolution     Volume:  27     ISSN:  1872-8383     ISO Abbreviation:  Trends Ecol. Evol. (Amst.)     Publication Date:  2012 May 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2012-04-24     Completed Date:  2012-08-09     Revised Date:  2014-05-29    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8805125     Medline TA:  Trends Ecol Evol     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  296-305     Citation Subset:  IM    
Copyright Information:
Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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MeSH Terms
Biological Evolution*
Birds / anatomy & histology,  growth & development*,  physiology
Dinosaurs / anatomy & histology,  growth & development*,  physiology
Feathers / anatomy & histology
Flight, Animal*

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