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Old 12-11-2019, 02:09 PM
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Originally Posted by GreysonCarlisle View Post
Why did the Enantiornithes go extinct while the ancestors of modern birds did not? Just reading the Wiki on them, they were highly diverse and widespread, with all sorts of special adaptations, and they too had the power of flight. They seem like the sort of animal that would have had at least some survivors.

Were they just out-competed by what would become modern birds, or was there something about their flight capabilities or growth rate (both mentioned in the Wiki article) that made them inefficient in the post-KT world?
I don't think that anything other than the luck of the draw is necessary to explain their extinction. As I mentioned as few as four to six lineages - possibly as few as six species, but probably more - of modern birds survived the KT event. There's no evidence that any Enantiornithes survived the event and were outcompeted subsequently.

As I said, all tree-dwelling birds apparently went extinct. The surviving modern bird lineages were ground birds at the time. It also appears they may have also been seed-eaters. Enantiornithes mostly still had teeth rather than beaks like modern birds, so perhaps lacked specialized seed-eaters.