Golden Bristles

Golden BristlesSo this is Kulindadromeus zaibaikalicus, the recently discovered ornithischian dinosaur from Jurassic Siberia that allegedly had feathers. If you’ve seen the spate of articles claiming that all dinosaurs had feathers, they’re basing their conclusions off this find.

Yellow journalism aside, if you actually examine the fossil evidence for these animals, their “feathers” appear to have a fundamentally different, and more unique, structure from those in theropods. They’re more like plate-shaped scales with bristly projections shooting off them. Nonetheless, it is still a fascinating revelation and one wonders just what kind of function it may have served. Given that it was found way up in Siberia, I would have guessed the dinosaur might have evolved these bristles to protect against winters which would have been cooler than elsewhere in the Jurassic world.

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