Our thanks to Cooper, a dinosaur fan who commented on one of our blog posts highlighting one of his favourite dinosaurs, the diminutive Anchiornis (A. huxleyi), the scientific name translating as “Huxley’s near bird”.

An illustration of Anchiornis huxleyi.
An illustration of the feathered dinosaur Anchiornis huxleyi. Picture credit: Julius Csotonyi.

Controversial Taxonomy

Many palaeontologists believe that this small dinosaur known from Upper Jurassic deposits associated with the Tiaojishan Formation of Liaoning (north-eastern China), is a basal member of the Paraves clade, a part of the Maniraptora that incorporates the dromaeosaurids, the troodontids and the avialans, those dinosaurs that lead directly to the evolution of modern birds. The exact taxonomic position of this dinosaur remains controversial.

Fossil of an Anchiornis
Ancient, feathered creature. An Anchiornis fossil from the famous Tiaojishan Formation of Liaoning Province (north-eastern China). Picture credit: CAS.

A Fan of Anchiornis

Cooper produced a near perfect copy of one of Everything Dinosaur’s numerous articles on Anchiornis huxleyi. The many fossil specimens associated with this species has led to several different types of scientific research paper being published about Anchiornis, focusing on ontogeny, phylogeny and behavioural aspects of this little theropod.

Everything Dinosaur has written a number of blog posts (at least fourteen), about Anchiornis with our first article being published in 2009.

PNSO Luffy the Anchiornis Dinosaur Model
The PNSO “Luffy” the Anchiornis dinosaur model from the “Age of Dinosaurs” model range. PNSO introduced a series of prehistoric animal models, many of which were based on Chinese fossil discoveries.

A spokesperson for the UK-based specialist mail order company stated:

“Our thanks to Cooper for reaching out to us. We deal with hundreds of enquires every week and we do our best to respond to all those that require a reply. We are glad that Cooper found our work on Anchiornis huxleyi so thought-provoking and informative.”

Anchiornis huxleyi

Named and described shortly before Everything Dinosaur published its first blog post about this dinosaur, the species name honours Thomas Henry Huxley, an early champion of Darwin’s theory of evolution.

The Chinese company PNSO is one of the few mainstream model makers to have made an Anchiornis figure. “Luffy” the Anchiornis (pictured above), is one of a series of 48 models featured in the “Age of Dinosaurs – Toys that Accompany your Growth” model range. It also features in the huge PNSO Age of Dinosaurs box set.

Forty-eight models in the PNSO gift box.
PNSO special edition gift box features 48 prehistoric animal models including “Luffy” the Anchiornis.

To view the PNSO Anchiornis model and the other prehistoric animal figures available from Everything Dinosaur: PNSO Age of Dinosaurs.

The Everything Dinosaur website: Dinosaur Models and Toys.