Skip to content

2019 Reader Question 11

2019 Reader Question 11 published on 12 Comments on 2019 Reader Question 11

Microraptors are paravian dinosaurs, which includes birds, but they aren’t birds! The scientists in the mythical community theorize that ouzelum birds like David are related to that group. But because of the secretive nature of the mythical community, nobody can really be sure!

12 Comments

See now, that makes perfect sense to me; thanks! And I *still* think it’s weird that birds (especially seabirds) lost their teeth; I’m guessing it was because of major dietary changes (although that brings up a chicken-or-egg question of which came first), but to me it still seems odd. Eh; evolution’s weird; I mean, look at Star-nosed Moles and Argentine Lake Ducks– they make beakteeth look sane and practical.

By the way, guineapigjones, if you’re reading this… while it’s true that birds don’t have ‘teeth’ per se, have you ever seen a picture of the inside of a goose’s beak, or maybe a penguin? Those cartilaginous protrusions are called “tomia”, and they help the animal keep hold of their food. While they may not be covered with enamel like human teeth, and while they are made of a form of cartilage (not bone), don’t make the mistake of assuming they’re soft. Anyone who’s been bitten by a nesting goose will tell you that it *can* break the skin and make you bleed.

Geese use them to rip grasses from the ground (they clamp down on a tuft of grass and shake their head to sever it; the tomia helps them maintain their grip) and also to hold on to small prey like snails, rodents, and insects. Penguins eat fish… and in the wild, those fish are still alive and squirming. The tomia prevent the fish from escaping and also keep the fish going head-first so the penguin doesn’t choke on it.

Scientists believe birds actually did have teeth roughly 80-100 million years ago. It could be that birds with larger “teeth” have gone extinct or that the teeth have been bred out of them. So it doesn’t surprise me at all that Jim and David have teeth.

Leave a Reply to Robin V Taliaferro Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *