A distinct proterosuchid trait is the peculiar hook-shaped mouth.With its short tail and toothless beak, Confuciusornis is very modern looking compared to Archaeopteryx.
Index fossils dating
Together with Ichthyostega the sole early labyrinthodont known from fairly complete skeletons.
It is the oldest animal known to have feet rather than fins, thus making it a true tetrapod and the oldest known unquestionable ichthyostegalian.
Scientists say there are two implications for palaeontology.
Firstly they provide new evidence for the 'Out of Africa' theory - that modern humans evolved only in Africa and not in several places around the world.
This is a tentative partial list of transitional fossils (fossil remains of groups that exhibits both "primitive" and derived traits).