The Dinosaur on Your Dinner Table

Denver Museum of Nature & Science

Birds evolved from small, meat-eating dinosaurs that had feathers, hollow bones, and feet similar to modern birds. These and other traits helped scientists determine that birds are actually avian dinosaurs.

The earliest known avian dinosaur is 150 million years old. Archaeopteryx had birdlike wings and a long, bony dinosaur tail.

Turkeys were first domesticated by Native Americans. Primarily raised for their feathers, the traits of these penned turkeys were relatively unchanged—until Europeans got ahold of them.

Next Thanksgiving, reserve a moment of thanks for the avian dinosaur that survived an asteroid and millions of years of natural selection only to end up on your dinner table.

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