Archaeopteryx are the earliest known flying birds and only about the size of a modern day magpie. Living around 150 million years ago, Archaeopteryx had developed flying abilities that may have evolved from gliding out of trees or simply running along the ground. The first complete skeleton was discovered in Jurassic limestone in Germany in 1861 and is a very important fossil, almost certainly representing the transition between reptiles and birds. This missing link shares sharp teeth and a long bony tail with small theropod dinosaurs, and a wishbone and feathers with the birds.
Scientific name: Archaeopteryx
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Additional data source: Animal Diversity Web
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