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Thundercats 2011 was great. I mean, it even had Thanos and infinity stones before it was cool. Such a good remake simply couldn't survive in final-stage capitalism, as those who worked on it didn't sacrifice quality to more efficiently promote plastic landfill. Well, at least my secret network of spies across the WWW managed to track down one of the art directors (well, his DA page), here I found something interesting I didn't even notice while watching the show.

enter image description here

enter image description here

See where the wings are? Well, I think this image shows it even better. They're closer to the waist. In paper, this solves problems with balance, but people who praised this idea forgot that now these bird people have a big, rigid bone in the area of their stomachs, making basic things, like bending down to grab something, an impossible task. I have very, very similar creatures in my world (please don't sue) and I haven't actually thought about this... HECK!

My two other six-limbed creatures, centaurs and dragons avoid this anatomical problem. Centaurs have their human body where normally a horse's neck would be, which is pretty flexible; and dragons are still rather snakey, despite their bigger chests, plus their forelegs have been dialed down to reduce the TPK-capability of an all-out "paw-paw-bite-and-set-on-fire" pounce.

Bird people aren't particularly snakey, neither are they short kings like the aarakocra. I still wanted to keep the bird people's weight low, because I won't go through the same headaches, estimating dragon flight-capability had brought.

Alexander Zass, the guy who could bend steel, was only 167 cm and 80 kg. So I guess we will be safe with a total mass of 70 kilograms for bird people, plus what Marden said that around 20-25% of a bird's weight is their flight muscles, we get either 56-52.5 kilograms to make the rest of the body. As I said before, I'm more lenient with height (they can be taller if that helps the issue), but weight is still a constraint.

Sure, they aren't supposed to be strong, yet taking away even more of the pecs sounds like a bad idea, as they still need to do things like wielding weapons and coffee covfefe mugs, but then the lengthening of their ribcage is inevitable and I am Iron Man. But seriously, how can I keep these bird people out of the uncanny valley while also giving them enough flight muscles without compromising their ability to do ab crunches?

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    $\begingroup$ I'm not sure how critical this actually is. They clearly have long necks, allowing flexibility there. They can probably bend over almost completely at the hips because their wings could be swung back to counter-balance. Less stomach crunch, more toe touches. Bend the knees the right way and the center of mass could be very favorable with the wings so low on the back. I'm not a physiologist, though, so I'm not putting this down as an answer. $\endgroup$ – DWKraus Aug 7 '20 at 2:02
  • $\begingroup$ cheeki breeki squat? $\endgroup$ – Li Jun Aug 7 '20 at 3:03
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    $\begingroup$ I don't think bird's wings are necessarily located exactly or near their center of mass, I know because I have studied the taste and their anatomy all my life ;D $\endgroup$ – user6760 Aug 7 '20 at 10:18
  • $\begingroup$ You may find some of what you're looking for here Anatomically correct multiarmed humanoids $\endgroup$ – Pelinore Aug 8 '20 at 15:58
  • $\begingroup$ Aren't you supposed to bend/squat with your knees, not your back, anyway? $\endgroup$ – EveryBitHelps Aug 8 '20 at 16:43
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Hip joints

I should preface this by saying I'm not by any means an expert on birds' anatomy. That said, if you feel the need to keep some scientific accuracy so that these bird folk have a rigid sternum in their mid section, a possible way to circumvent their innability to bend forward would be setting their hip joints further apart.

Just like in goold ol' regular birds, this would allow them to bend down in more of a squatting fashion if need be. It wouldn't really solve the problem of the ab crunches, but I believe it might improve their mobility as long as you allow for some hip torque.

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The wings could be anchored to something like a second set of shoulder blades that attach near the bottom of the ribcage. This would allow for an open area between the ribs and pelvis but not quite as big as a human's.

Some birds barely have a separation at all between ribs and hips. They make up for it with flexible hip joints and the ability to fly.

Alternatively you could extend the pelvis upward with an outcropping on either side for wing joints to fit into. This may put your wings too low, or maybe not.

Those of us who are human get a couple of less connected ribs that don't come all the way around like the rest. Your birdfolk could have even more of those to anchor your extra bones on.

In the end though, who's gonna check if the fictional species you created is biologically accurate? Give those bird people wings.

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I think this image from the answer by Len to this Anatomically correct multiarmed humanoids SE question is probably what you're looking for. enter image description here Obviously the lower pair of arms become your wings.

Just scale your bird men accordingly to achieve the height you want.

Naturally the wings are going to be longer & the bird sternum & its muscles (which should be somewhat bigger than human pecs) replacing the lower ribcage will provide a different 'chest' shape in the upper body area than shown.

You probably want to relocate the wings shoulders back a little closer to the spine than normal shoulders to help avoid the two sets of limbs interfering with each other.

But I don't see a problem with waist flexibility in this skeletal structure, hope that helps.

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