Today, any kid can rattle off the names of dozens of dinosaurs. But it took centuries of scientific effort--and a lot of luck--to discover and establish the diversity of dinosaur species we now know. How did we learn that Triceratops had three horns? Why don´t many paleontologists consider Brontosaurus a valid species? What convinced scientists that modern birds are relatives of ancient Velociraptor? In The Story of the Dinosaurs in 25 Discoveries, Donald R. Prothero tells the fascinating stories behind the most important fossil finds and the intrepid researchers who unearthed them. In twenty-five vivid vignettes, he weaves together the dramatic tales of dinosaur discoveries with what modern science now knows about the species to which they belong. Prothero takes us from eighteenth-century sightings of colossal bones taken for biblical giants through recent discoveries of enormous predators even larger than Tyrannosaurus. He recounts the escapades of the larger-than-life personalities who made modern paleontology, including scientific rivalries like the nineteenth-century ´´Bone Wars.´´ Prothero also details how to draw the boundaries between species and explores debates such as whether dinosaurs had feathers, explaining the findings that settled them or keep them going. Throughout, he offers a clear and rigorous look at what paleontologists consider sound interpretation of evidence. An essential read for any dinosaur lover, this book teaches us to see an ancient world ruled by giant majestic creatures anew.
Vertebrate palaeontology is a lively field, with new discoveries reported every week... and not only dinosaurs! This new edition reflects the international scope of vertebrate palaeontology, with a special focus on exciting new finds from China. A key aim is to explain the science. Gone are the days of guesswork. Young researchers use impressive new numerical and imaging methods to explore the tree of life, macroevolution, global change, and functional morphology. The fourth edition is completely revised. The cladistic framework is strengthened, and new functional and developmental spreads are added. Study aids include: key questions, research to be done, and recommendations of further reading and web sites. The book is designed for palaeontology courses in biology and geology departments. It is also aimed at enthusiasts who want to experience the flavour of how the research is done. The book is strongly phylogenetic, and this makes it a source of current data on vertebrate evolution.
The best-selling Princeton Field Guide to Dinosaurs remains the must-have book for anyone who loves dinosaurs, from amateur enthusiasts to professional paleontologists. Now extensively revised and expanded, this dazzlingly illustrated large-format edition features some 100 new dinosaur species and 200 new and updated illustrations, bringing readers up to the minute on the latest discoveries and research that are radically transforming what we know about dinosaurs and their world. Written and illustrated by acclaimed dinosaur expert Gregory Paul, this stunningly beautiful book includes detailed species accounts of all the major dinosaur groups as well as nearly 700 color and black-and-white images - skeletal drawings, life studies, scenic views, and other illustrations that depict the full range of dinosaurs, from small feathered creatures to whale-sized supersauropods.
´The need for a readable and up-to-date survey of the current state of palaeontological knowledge is pressing. Thankfully, with The Rise and Fall of the Dinosaurs, Steve Brusatte has triumphantly risen to the challenge . . . Nothing . . . is more thrillingly brought to life than the dinosaurs themselves.´ Tom Holland, Sunday Times ´A Jurassic blockbuster . . . A gripping read in the best traditions of popular science.´ Observer ´The epic tale of the dinosaurs´ rise to dominance and extinction . . . a thrilling journey back in time.´ National Geographic Sixty-six million years ago the dinosaurs were wiped from the face of the earth. Today, a new generation of dinosaur hunters are piecing together the complete history of how the dinosaurs created a hugely successful empire that lasted for around 150 million years. Steve Brusatte, one of the world´s leading palaeontologists, uses fossil clues that have been gathered using state-of-the-art technology to follow these magnificent creatures from the start of their evolution, to their final days, and the legacy that they left behind. Along the way, Brusatte offers thrilling accounts of some of the remarkable discoveries he has made, including primitive, human-sized tyrannosaurs and monstrous carnivores even larger than a T. rex. The Rise and Fall of the Dinosaurs is a timely reminder of what humans can learn from the magnificent creatures who ruled the earth before us. ´Brusatte brings dinosaurs alive for a new generation.´ The Times
From The Land Before Time to Jurassic Park, images of fantastically large, long-necked, plant-eating dinosaurs have captured our imaginations. These are the sauropods: centerpieces of museums and gentle giants of the distant past. Imagine what it must have been like to crest a hill and see in the valley below not just one sauropod, but an entire herd, feeding its way across the landscape. The most massive land animals ever to have lived, sauropods roamed widely across the continents through most of the Age of Dinosaurs from about 220 to 65 million years ago. They reached incredible sizes, giving rise to the question: Why were they so big? Early guesses suggested that they gained protection from predators by virtue of their size, which also allowed them to reach the tops of trees in order to eat leaves and conifer needles. More recent hypotheses hold that they needed a long and complicated digestive tract due to their consumption of low-nutrient food sources: size was an offshoot of that need. Whatever the explanation, there is little doubt that natural selection produced something extraordinary when the Sauropoda diversified into a wide variety of species. This book combines majestic artwork and the best of paleontological research to resurrect the lives of sauropods. The Sauropod Dinosaurs shows how these amazing creatures raised and defended their young, traveled in groups, and interacted with the rich diversity of Mesozoic plants and animals. Beautiful enough to sit on the coffee table, the book also serves as the best reference available on these bygone giants. Anyone with a passion for dinosaurs or prehistoric life will cherish this once-in-a-generation masterpiece. The book includes the following features: ·Over 200 full-color illustrations ·More than 100 color photographs from museums, field sites, and collections around the world ·Thoughtfully placed drawings and charts ·Clearly written text reviewed by major sauropod researchers ·Descriptions of the latest sauropod concepts and discoveries ·A field guide to major groups of sauropods ·Detailed skeletal reconstructions and anatomical restorations ·A comprehensive glossary