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Scientific Classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Order: Pterosauria
Genus: Pedopenna
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The term ‘Pedopenna' was derived from the Greek word, the meaning of, which is feathered foot. The term pedopenna is pronounced as ped-oh-pen-ah. It was known to have been existed in Daohugou beds of China . Different ideas exist regarding the period of pedopenna; some of the researchers say that it belonged to the early cretaceous age, while others believe that they belong to the middle Jurassic period. The name of the dinosaur itself specifies that pedopenna would have got a feathered foot.

It has been found the pedopenna would have been one meter (i.e.) three feet in length. Even though the length has been determined, it was not confirmed since it is known from the hind legs. Pedopenna is grouped as paravian, which belonged to the group of maniraptoran dinosaurs.

The feet of the pedopenna is known to resemble other dinosaurs like dromaeosaurids and troodontids, which belong to the deinonychosauria group and both these dinosaurs were more prehistoric. The difference between pedopenna and the above-mentioned two types of dinosaurs is that the second toe of the pedopenna was slightly shortened and it had an enlarged claw as compared to these two types of dinosaurs. On the other hand, the dromaeosaurids and troodontids had sickle like claws, which was strongly curved.

Pedopenna was evidence to the dinosaur bird evolutionary relationship. In addition to the bird like bones, pedopenna was amazing because of the presence of long feathers on the foot. Some other dinosaurs also had hind wings like pedopenna, but the wings of pedopenna were more round shaped and were smaller. The other difference in the wings of pedopenna is that its wings were symmetrical as against asymmetrical wings of other dinosaurs. The wings of the pedopenna were known to be around 55mm long. Dinosaurs with asymmetrical wings were like animals adapted to flying. This proves that pedopenna belonged to the early stage in the growth of these structures.

It is known that the feathers of pedopenna possessed barbs and rachis. Even though the exact number of feathers in the wings of pedopenna was not known, it has been found that they had a large number of feathers as compared to the wings of other types of dinosaurs. Evidence were found regarding the short feathers of the pedopenna and it has been found that the wings would have lied on the top of the long foot feathers. It has been found that the feathers of pedopenna must have been weaker as compared to the feathers of other birds and bird like dinosaurs. The feathers would have been vestigial and ornamental.

Researchers have found that the hind wings might have been present in the ancestors of dinosaurs and it might have been lost in the later generation of birds.