Theropod Flight Origins: Latest Insights and New Frontiers

The origin of flight in theropods was a key innovation enabling birds to rise to prominence in extant ecosystems. Diverse evidence indicates aerial behaviour in early birds and select non-avialans, suggesting multiple origins of theropod flight. To further investigate this scenario, we must understand how flight evolved along different lineages particularly how differences in functional morphology affected flight performance. We gathered diverse experts working on extant and fossil data using a range of integrative methodologies. Here we showcase their research on these questions improving how we can best understand vertebrate flight evolution, theropods, and Mesozoic terrestrial ecology more broadly.