A class of vertebrates whose members are characterized by scales modified into feathers for flight, endothermy, and amniotic eggs. The birds.
An ancient bird whose fossils were bound in 1861 in Bavaria, Germany. It lived during the Jurassic period, about 150 million years ago. It had a long, reptilian tail and clawed fingers.
Another ancient bird, discovered in China, and is closely related to ancestral bird stocks. Fossils are 135 million years old and have some primitive dinosaur-like characteristics.
The coverings of feathers on a bird.
Feathers that cover the body, wings, and tail of a bird. Contour feathers provide flight surfaces and are responsible for plumage colors.
Feathers that provide insulation for adult and immature birds.
A small, thin feather that probably has sensory functions in birds (pinfeathers).
Done by birds by rubbing the bill over the feathers, keeping the feathers smooth, clean and in place.
The periodic renewal of feathers of birds by shedding and replacement. In arthropods and other invertebrates, the shedding of the exoskeleton or other body covering is called molting ecdysis.
A compartment of muscle tissue that birds use to store and soften their food before it moves on to be processed by the gizzard.
Digestive organ in birds.
Having one mate at a time.
Having more than one female mate. Polygyny tends to occur in species whose young are relatively independent at birth or hatching.
Having more than one male mate. Polyandry is advantageous when food is plentiful, but because of predation or other factors, the chances of successfully rearing young are low.
An animal that is helpless at hatching or birth.
Having developed to a high degree of independence at the time of hatching or birthing.
Periodic round trips of animals between breeding and non-breeding areas or to and from feeding areas.