An isolated piece of feather, trapped within a tangled mass of spider’s web in Late Cretaceous Canadian amber. The feather branches may have been gray or black.
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Numerous individual filaments in Late Cretaceous Canadian amber. These filaments are similar to the protofeathers that have been found as fossils with…Read More »
some dinosaurs. These filaments range from clear to near-black. Less «
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Coiled For Diving
A feather accompanied by a microphysid plant bug. The coiling observed in the feather is directly comparable to coils found in modern bird feathers specialized…Read More »
for water uptake and are suggestive of diving behavior, but similar structures can be used to transport water to the nest. Less «
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Pigmentation in these feathers gives it a beaded appearance. Pigment in the feather suggests it would have been medium- or dark-brown in color.
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The cork-screw shaped structures in the image are the tightly coiled bases of feather barbules.
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An isolated barb from a white belly feather of a modern grebe (Aechmophorus occidentalis), illustrating coiled barbule bases comparable to those in the…Read More »
Cretaceous specimen. In both cases, the coiling is a structural adaptation that allows the feather to absorb water. Less «
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A feather barb that shows some indication of original coloration. The oblong brown masses within the image are regions of color within the barbules. In…Read More »
this specimen, the overall feather color appears to have been medium- or dark-brown. Less «
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A clear example
An isolated, unpigmented feather barb and a mite preserved in Canadian Late Cretaceous amber.
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Overview of 6 pigmented feather barbs.
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Overview of 16 clumped feather barbs
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Jennifer Welsh graduated from the University of California, Santa Cruz's Science Communication graduate program after working at a start up biotech company for three years after getting her Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences from the University of Notre Dame. She has worked at WiredScience, The Scientist and Discover Magazine before joining the Live Science team.