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Lousy dinosaurs

A fossilised louse found in Germany (with its last meal of feathers in its stomach) could prove that bird lice are older than birds - meaning they could have originally been parasites on feathered dinosaurs.


( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
Mar. 4th, 2004 03:50 am (UTC)
How cool.

Mar. 4th, 2004 03:57 am (UTC)
That's certainly interesting, but I find it hard to see how this particular fossil proves any link with dinosaurs (who were already extinct for 20 million years). Birds and dinosaurs split in the Jurassic, probably around 135 million years ago.

On the other hand, it's hard to see how parasitic insects could resist nice warm juicy dinosaur blood, so it's quite likely dinosaurs carried lice ancestors. It's concievable that lice evolved to suck dinosaur blood, but it's equally likely that they were around much earlier and hopped from earlier mammel-like reptiles to dinosaurs to birds to mammels.

Interesting none-the-less.
Mar. 5th, 2004 03:56 am (UTC)
The thought of a dinosaur in a lousy temper doesn't appeal, however. But if these aren't blood-sucking ones it wouldn't figure.

Goes off, not scratching, not at all, at all....
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )