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Blue tones of color in fossil prehistoric feathers



<div date-thumb = "https://3c1703fe8d.site.internapcdn.net/newman/csz/news/tmb/2019/bluecolorton.jpg" data-src = "https: //3c1703fe8d.site.internapcdn Eocoracias brachyptera fossil samples used for this study. The rich black texture on the surface is petrified bird plumage The fossil is stored in the Science Research Institute of Schenkenberg.

<img src = "https://3c1703fe8d.site.internapcdn.net/newman/csz/news/800/2019/bluecolorton.jpg" alt = "Blue tones of color in fossil prehistoric feathers" title = "[19459003Eocoraciasbrachyptera fossil samples used for this study. The rich black texture on the surface is petrified bird plumage. Fossil is stored at the Senckenberg Research Institute Credit: Sven Trackenker, photographer at the Senckenberg Research Institute and the Nature Museum of Frankfurt. "/ >
Eocoracias brachyptera fossil sample used for this study. The rich black texture on the surface is a fossilized plumage of the bird. Fossils are stored in the Senkenberg Research Institute. Sincerely: Sven Trackenker, photographer at the Senkenberg Science Institute and the Museum of Nature in Frankfurt.
Investigating fossilized pigments, scientists at the University of Bristol have discovered new insights into blue tones in prehistoric birds.


Paleontologists have known for some time that the melanin pigment can be preserved in fossils and has been able to reconstruct color fossil models.

Melanin pigment gives the birds black, reddish-brown and gray colors and takes part in the creation of brightly flowing glitter.

This can be observed by studying melanin packs called melanosomes, which are shaped like small cylindrical objects smaller than one thousandth of a millimeter and vary in shape from sausage to small meatballs.

In addition to flowing colors, which are structural, birds also make non-flowing structural colors. It has not yet been known whether such colors can be found in the fossils.

This blue structural color is created by the dense arrangement of cavities inside the feathers that scatters the blue light. Below it is a layer of melanin that absorbs unsaturated light.

Paleontologists have shown that the feather itself, which is made of keratin, is not stinging until the melanin does. Therefore, if a blue feather is faded, the dark pigment may be the only surviving characteristic and the pen can be interpreted as black or brown.

<div date-thumb = "https://3c1
703fe8d.site.internapcdn.net/ newman / csz / news / tmb / 2019/1-bluecolorton.jpg" data-src = "https://3c1703fe8d.site .internapcdn.net / newman / gfx / news / 2019/1-bluecolorton.jpg "-html =" Reconstruction of Eocoracias brachyptera with hypothetical staining of plumage Credit: Reconstruction by Dr. Marta Sacher at the University in Bristol. "

<img src = "https://3c1703fe8d.site.internapcdn.net/newman/csz/news/800/2019/1-bluecolorton.jpg" alt = "Blue color tones in fossil prehistoric feathers" title = " Reconstruction of Eocoracias brachyptera with hypothetical staining of plumage Credit: Reconstruction by Dr. Marta Sacher of the University of Bristol "/>
Reconstruction of Eocoracias brachyptera with hypothetical staining of plumage. Credit: Reconstruction by Dr. Marta Sacher at the University of Bristol.

Researchers at the University of Bristol, headed by Phare Barbarowic, currently at Sheffield University, have shown that blue feather melanosomes are very different from melanosomes that are feathers, expressing black, reddish-brown, brown and overflowing, but overlapping significantly with some gray feather melanosomes.

Looking at the coloration of fossil fossil replicas and reconstructing which color is most likely to be present in the fossil specimen, they are able to distinguish the significant melanosomes for the gray and the blue color. , which led to the reconstruction of prehistoric Eocoracias brachyptera as a predominantly blue bird.

Fare Barbaboric said: "We have found that melanosomes in blue feathers have a different size in most of the color categories, and therefore we can limit fossils may have been blue initially."

"Overlapping with gray may suggest some common mode of chanism about how melanosomes are involved in the formation of gray, and how these structural blue colors are formed.

"Based on these results in our publication, we have also suggested a potential evolutionary transition between blue and gray."

  Blue tones of color in fossil prehistoric feathers
Yours sincerely: Marta Sacher, Ph.D., University of Bristol.

The research team now needs to know which birds are more likely to be blue based on their ecology and lifestyle. Blue color is common in nature, but the ecology of this color and its function in bird life is still elusive.

Fare Barbaraci added: "We need to understand how to make a gray color, much different in birds than in mammals. We believe that this is related to how the shape of the melanoma can lead to a kind of self-organizing a process in the feathers and the surface tension of melanosomes pulls them into certain configurations inside the feathers, it is formed. "


Scientists discover how birds and dinosaurs have evolved to dazzle with color displays


More Information:
"Characterization of melanosomes involved in the production of non-diffusive structural colors of feathers and their discovery in the fossil record" F. Babarovich, M. Puttick, M. Zaher, E. Learmonth, EJ Gallimore, F. Smithwick, G. Mayr and J. Vinther, Interface rsif.royalsocietypublishing.or … .1098 / rsif.2018.0921

Provided by
University of Bristol

References :
Blue color tones in fossil prehistoric feathers (2019, June 25)
drawn up on 25 June 2019
by https://phys.org/news/2019-06-blue-tones-fossilized-prehistoric-feathers.html

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