Did dinosaurs sport colors?

A. huxleyi (BMNHC PH828) with SEMs of samples from the feathers. (A) Part, with inset of isolated right hindlimb. The left forelimb is seen in ventral view, and the right is seen in dorsal view. (B) Explanatory illustration. Numbered dots indicate samples from the part (red) and counterpart (blue) (table S4 and fig. S5). (C to H) SEMs of melanosomes and melanosome impressions taken from samples 7 (C), 6 (D), 5 (E), 18 (F), 24 (G), and 21 (H). Ga, gastralia; Fu, furcula; Lh, left humerus; Lm, left manus; Lp, left pes; Lr, left radius; Ls, left scapula; Lu, left ulna; Mu, manual ungual; Rh, right humerus; Rm, right manus; Rr, right radius; Ru, right ulna; Rs, right scapula. Source: Q Li et al. Science 2010;327:1369-1372

Fresh research from Science on the preserved feathers of a Late Jurassic basal paravian theropod A. huxleyi dinosaur fossil used the morphology of color-imparting melanosomes to reconstruct mapped feather color patterns. This indicated that it had a gray and dark body and that its face had rufous speckles. The crown was rufous, and the long limb feathers were white with distal black spangles. As this species was before powered flight, its feathers may have played a role in sexual selection or other communication.

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About chuyeeming

Just another passionate collector of fossils
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