Science in China Series D-Earth Sciences, Volume 42 , Issue 4 : 434-441(1999) https://doi.org/10.1360/yd1999-42-4-434

A long tailed bird from the Late Cretaceous of Zhejiang

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  • AcceptedJun 20, 1999
  • PublishedJul 20, 1999


A new fossil bird was discovered from the lower part of Upper Cretaceous of Linhai, Zhejiang. With a long tail comprising more than 20 caudal vertebrae, this new brid is morphologically similar to that of Archaeopteryx. Meanwhile , it is similar to Confuciusornis in lacking in teeth. The bird shows the following plesiomorphies besides a long tail: elements of the forelimbs are simple in structure j bones of the manus are separate from one another and two digits are free; abdominal ribs are present. And the new bird shows some apomorphies: The skull bones are lightly built with no teeth; the hindlimbs are better developed than the forelimbs, the articular condyle of the femur is pronouced; the sternum is broad and long; the phalanges and unguals are small, showing its ground-dwelling habit. The fossil bird, coming from the rock of the Late Cretaceous in shouthem China, is very significant to the study of the evolution and relationships of birds.

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