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Microraptor
Temporal range: Early Cretaceous
An artist's illustration of Microraptor gui
A fossil of Microraptor gui (with white arrows pointing at preserved feathers)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
clade: Dinosauria
Order: Saurischia
Suborder: Theropoda
Family: Dromaeosauridae
Subfamily: Microraptoria
Genus: Microraptor
Xu et al., 2000
Type species
Microraptor zhaoianus
Xu et al., 2000
Referred species
  • Microraptor gui (Xu et al., 2003)
  • Microraptor hanqingi (Gong et al., 2012)
  • Microraptor zhaoianus (Xu et al., 2000)
Synonyms
  • Cryptovolans Czerkas et al., 2002

Microraptor was a genus of small Dromaeosaur that lived in what would become China during the Cretaceous period. Sharing this with Bienosaurus, the Microraptor is the second dinosaur with three names.

It was one of the smallest known dinosaurs. An unusual and unique feature were the four wings it had. Not like a dragonfly, but wings on its arms and legs. It was probably a carnivore, having been found with Enantiornithe (an extinct type of bird) remains, probably using the same methods as modern day eagles and hawks, in which the "raptors" are believed to have evolved. It was one of the few definitely flying non-avian dinosaurs, having adaptations similar to modern birds like a propatagium and an allula, though having a more bat-like wing musculature. It had claws like Velociraptor that it probably used to pick up small lizards. By comparing the patterns of pigment-containing organelles from a Microraptor fossil to those in modern birds, the scientists determined that the dinosaur's plumage was iridescent with hues of black and blue like the feathers of a crow.

History

Description

Classification

Paleobiology

In popular culture

  • In The Land Before Time XII: the Great Day of the Flyers and in Hermit of the Black Rock, Guido is a Microraptor and he was the only dinosaur that glides. He has a strange color, being green, which some scientists think it was iridescent black. The skull shape of Microraptor is known to be weird, as around the base is taller and the tip gradually gets narrower. Some evidence showed that Microraptor probably Did have feather crests like the fossil showed seemed to show.
  • Microraptor also made a appearance in Planet Dinosaur chasing a lizard, but it was ambushed by another dinosaur, Sinornithosaurus and had to escape. It had a beautiful color, being brown, white and black, which some scientists think it was iridescent black. The skull shape of Microraptor is known to be a little right, as around the base is taller and the tip gradually gets narrower. Some evidence showed that Microraptor probably Did have feather crests like the fossil showed seemed to show.
  • It was also featured in Prehistoric Park from the episode "Dinobirds" onwards, when Nigel Marven had captured them in a mid-Cretaceous Chinese forest. It had another strange color, being black, white, pink, and red black, white, and rusty red, which some scientists think it was iridescent black. The skull shape of Microraptor is known to be a little right, as around the base is taller and the tip gradually gets narrower. Some evidence showed that Microraptor probably did have feather crests like the fossil showed seemed to show.
  • It appears in Dino Lab II. It had another beautiful color, being black, white, and rusty red, which the real creature was iridescent black. The skull shape of Microraptor is known to be a little right, as around the base is taller and the tip gradually gets narrower. Some evidence showed that Microraptor probably did have feather crests like the fossil showed seemed to show.
  • It appears in Dino Dan: Trek's Adventures as a glorious color, being blue, white and red, which some scientists think it was iridescent black. The skull shape of Microraptor is known to be either unknown or a little right, as around the base is taller and the tip gradually gets narrower.
  • It made a minor appearance in T.Rex New Science New Beast.
  • It appeared in the 2nd episode of Mammals vs Dinos: The Rise of Mammals.
  • Althought all the previous shows mentioned got the color scheme a little correct, the closest color scheme is from Dinosaur Train. There, the Microraptors are depicted as dark purple and light pink, very close to the other's iridescent black.
  • It also appears in the documentary conquest of the sky where it's either completely accurate or inaccurate.

Gallery

Microraptor/Gallery

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