Animal Database

Hi Homo sapien! Welcome to Animal Database! Anyway, did you know that you're 60% genetically similar to banana trees?


Animal Database
Animal Database
220px-Protarchaeopteryx 4713
Artist's reconstruction (head based on Incisivosaurus).
Range China
Scientific Classification
Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Chordata
Class Reptilia
Order Saurischia
Family Oviraptorosauria
Genus Protarchaeopteryx
Species P. robusta
Conservation Status

The Protarchaeopteryx (meaning "before Archaeopteryx") is a genus of turkey-sized feathered theropod dinosaur from China. Known from the Jianshangou bed of the Yixian Formation, it lived during the early Aptian age of the Early Cretaceous, approximately 124.6 million years ago. It was probably an herbivore or omnivore, although its hands were very similar to those of small carnivorous dinosaurs. It appears to be one of the most basal members of the Oviraptorosauria, closely related to or synonymous with Incisivosaurus.


Protarchaeopteryx had long legs, and could have been a quick runner. It had well-developed, vaned feathers extended from a relatively short tail; the hands were long and slender, and had three fingers with sharp, curved claws. Its bones were hollow and bird-like, and it possessed a wishbone. At around 1 metre (3.3 ft) in length, it would have been larger than Archaeopteryx. Protarchaeopteryx also had symmetrical feathers on its tail. Since modern birds that have symmetrical feathers are flightless, and the skeletal structure of Protarchaeopteryx would not support flapping flight, it is assumed that it was flightless as well. It has been suggested that it could have had an arboreal lifestyle, jumping from tree limbs and using its forelimbs for a form of parachuting.