Back in action: Ashley Lipps, Ryan Carney, and Jackie Moustakas. Oh, and a Greater Rhea (Rhea americana) that had the good grace to expire in a convenient time and place. Thanks, dude.
By the way, Darren Naish blogs on just about everything interesting in the world, and that includes ratites from time to time. Right now he has weird Mesozoic mammals and Baikal seals. Head on over and give him a look.
Drew Lee gets brutal. We tore this animal all the way down. By the end of the day we had three or four biohazard bags full of feathers, fat, muscles, and viscera, and several large plastic bags full of bones and extremities. Ryan Carney took a wing, I got the neck, Drew and Sarah took the long bones, and the feet, dorsal vertebrae and ribs, and synsacrum are in the freezer waiting for us to make some kind of science out of them. I'm sure we'll think of something.
Here's a wing. Oddly large--compare to the emu in the previous post, which weighed more than twice as much as this animal--but emaciated-looking (not actually emaciated, that is, just very lightly muscled). Check out those wacky feather tracts on the forearm.
Ryan Carney does cool stuff determining the ranges of motion of bird and dromaeosaur forelimbs. We put this wing through its paces, about 90 different ways.
As usual, I've got gobs more to say about this. But that will have to be a story for another day.