Archaeopteryx and the evolution of flight

Hwa Ja Götz (MfN)

Museum für Naturkunde Berlin

Museum für Naturkunde Berlin
Berlin, Germany

Some have viewed Archaeopteryx as a fast runner which used its feathered arms for hunting prey.
Others believed these feathered arms to be an aid to a faster escape from predators. Both theories assume that flight developed from the ground. Others advocate the hypothesis that flight originated from the trees. They believe Archaeopteryx to have been a tree climber which fell on its prey from the trees or — safe from predators itself — glided from tree to tree. Just exactly how the ‘urvogel’ moved is still an ongoing field of research. The way in which Archaeopteryx might have moved has been reconstructed here based on the anatomy of the skeleton and taking its habitat into consideration.

More about this famous dinosaur at the Museum für Naturkunde:
Archaeopteryx lithographica – The Berlin specimen – The transitional fossil link between dinosaurs and modern birds.
Feathered Flight — 150 years of Archaeopteryx


  • Title: Archaeopteryx and the evolution of flight
  • Creator: Hwa Ja Götz (MfN)
  • Physical Location: Museum für Naturkunde, Invalidenstraße 43, 10115 Berlin
  • Rights: © Museum für Naturkunde. All rights reserved.

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