Feather diversity in the Barremian (Early Cretaceous) of Las Hoyas, Spain


en Comptes Rendus Palevol 10 (4) - Pages 219-223

Published on 30 June 2011

The preservation of feathers is a rare phenomenon in the fossil record. In this study, we report 11 isolated feathers from the Early Cretaceous of the Konservat-Lagerstätte of Las Hoyas, Spain. Most of them are preserved as a carbonised thin layer, but there are also imprints. The specimens are relatively small, and unambiguously correspond to body contour feathers, although it is very difficult to match them to a particular taxon (among avian or non-avian theropods). Among the fossils, there is an almost complete remige, a well-preserved fragment of a possible ornamental rectrice feather, and possibly a semiplume. Furthermore, some specimens appear to have different colour patterns, such as stripes or patches.


Theropoda, Aves, Feathers, Colouration, Cretaceous, Spain

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