Archaeopteryx is a primitive organism that shows characteristics transitional between dinosaurs and birds.
Archaeopteryx and its characteristics
Archaeopteryx was first discovered in 1861. The name Archaeopteryx means old wing. It had feathers and wings, but its skeleton more closely resembled that of a dinosaur.
- Archaeopteryx is considered by many to be the first bird, being of about 150 million years of age.
- Archaeopteryx had a full set of teeth
- Archaeopteryx had sharp teeth, three fingers with claws
Two Avian characteristics of Archaeopteryx are-
- It possessed feathers, which are exclusively avian structures.
- It had a rounded cranium with fused bones, jaws modified into a beak, forelimbs modified into wings.
Two Reptilian characteristics of Archaeopteryx are-
- It had teeth in jaws and claws on fingers.
- It also had a long tail with free caudal vertebrae and bears tail feathers.