5 Stories

Tiny Dinosaur Had Wings Like a Bat

They were made of skin, not feathers

(Newser) - A pint-sized dinosaur has a big surprise: It apparently sported a pair of bizarre wings. Dinosaurs normally used wings mostly made of feathers for flight. But the newly discovered creature evidently had wings made of skin instead, like those of a bat or some ancient flying reptiles. It's not... More »

Dinosaurs' First Feathers Were for ... Courtship

Males wanted to look nice, not fly, says study

(Newser) - Scientists have found evidence of the first feathered dinosaurs in the Western Hemisphere, but forget any notions about majestic flight. Researchers think these Ornithomimosaur specimens found in what is now Alberta, Canada, used their feathers a little like modern peacocks—to attract mates, not to fly, reports the BBC . The... More »

Scientist: Angels Can't Fly

Don't even bother asking about fairies

(Newser) - A British scientist has become a real Debbie Downer for angel fans with his pronouncement that the heavenly creatures as depicted in art would never get off the ground. Flight is simply not in the stars, given their human bodies and bird-like wings. “Even a cursory examination of the... More »

Cyborg Bugs Could Warn of Fires, Chemical Attacks

(Newser) - Cyborg bugs may sound like creatures in a Michael Bay movie, but they could save your life, New Scientist reports. The Pentagon is trying to implant electrodes in crickets and cicadas—which communicate via wingbeats—and program them to “speak” differently around certain chemicals. “The insect itself might... More »

Dinos Evolved Wings to Lure Opposite Sex

Feathered displays may have been about finding mates, not climbing trees

(Newser) - Among paleontologists, one of the big battles has long been over why dinosaurs originally evolved wings: Did they start gliding down from trees, or need extra propulsion when running? According to a new study, the first wings were all about impressing the ladies—it was sexual selection that let bigger-winged... More »

5 Stories