Archaeopteryx was a bird brain, according to ScienceNOW 4 Aug 2004, Nature vol. 430, p666, 5 Aug 2004, and New Scientist, 7 Aug, p10. Archaeopteryx is considered to be "the most primitive known bird" having barely evolved from being a dinosaur. Researchers at the University of Texas, Austin have used a computerised x-ray technique to build a three dimensional picture of the inside of the skull and inner ear of a fossil archaeopteryx. From this they deduced Archaeopteryx had a brain and inner ear very similar to living birds, with a large cerebellum and optic lobes well suited for flight. Palaeontologist Lawrence Witmar of Ohio State university claims the new understanding of archaeopteryx brain anatomy will help explain the evolutionary transition from dinosaurs to birds and the evolution of flight.

Editorial Comment: This study does not actually explain the transition from non-flying dinosaurs to flying birds because, as the researchers above rightly concluded, Archaeopteryx could already fly. In fact, this study confirms that archaeopteryx was a fully functional flying creature, just as creationists have claimed for many years, and not linked to the dinosaurs at all. (Ref. aves, fossils, flight)


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