- from Birds
The first known bird appeared about 150 million years ago, when dinosaurs walked the planet.
Fossils of this creature were discovered in 1861. Scientists call this crow-size bird archaeopteryx (ahr-kee-OP-ter-iks). That means “ancient wing.” It was the first creature known to have feathers.
The archaeopteryx was not like modern birds. It had sharp teeth. Its breastbone was more flat, and it had a long bony tail. We don’t know if its feathers were for flight. They might have been for keeping in body heat, like a built-in sweater. Many scientists think archaeopteryx was a transitional animal. It lived between dinosaurs and today’s birds.