The humble feather is at the heart of a new study, in which palaeontologists discover that feathered dinosaurs are even more similar to birds than previously thought.
Previous studies had suggested that they had a different protein composition than birds.
A team of scientists from University College Cork, Linyi University, and the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Light Source have discovered that the protein composition of dinosaur feathers is very similar to those of birds, suggesting that modern feather composition may have originated much earlier than previously believed.
The study is published in Nature Ecology and Evolution.
Using X-ray and infrared light technology, the scientists analyze 125 million-year-old fossil feathers from Sinornithosaurus, a feathered dinosaur, Confucius