Research NewsPaleontology

How Reptiles Took Wing

Science  07 Mar 1997:
Vol. 275, Issue 5305, pp. 1419
DOI: 10.1126/science.275.5305.1419

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On page 1450 of this issue, a German-Canadian team of scientists reports on the unusual wings of the oldest flying vertebrate, the 250-million-year-old Coelurosauravus jaekeli. All other known flying animals have wings adapted from ribs or forelimbs, but this reptile's wings are supported by new bones that formed directly in the skin.