The brains of modern birds are among the largest and densest in life (in proportion to their size!). According to a team of paleontologists from the University of Texas, this characteristic could explain why they are the only dinosaurs to have survived, as they show in their study published in ScienceAdvances.
To reach this conclusion, the researchers looked at a fossil ofIchthyornis, Cretaceous bird (145 million years to 66 million years before our era) native to North America, which did not survive the Great Extinction characteristic of the end of this period. This species is considered to be one of the closest relatives of modern birds (Aves). However, researchers believe that it would be anatomically more similar to the first winged dinosaurs than to modern birds, which tells us about the uniqueness of the latter.