By Robert T. Bakker

ISBN-10: 0688042872

ISBN-13: 9780688042875

Impressive examine new palaeontology and dinosaur paintings. Taking a few of the papers that Bakker wrote for medical journals and changing them to a publication that's a bit of extra comprehensible to the general public. the elemental premise is that dinosaurs weren't cold-blooded lizards, yet hotter blooded and fairly speedy every now and then. See Jurassic Park for an instance of the theories in motion. quite nice paintings.

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Extra resources for The Dinosaur Heresies: New Theories Unlocking the Mystery of the Dinosaurs and Their Extinction

Sample text

Romer's classification of reptiles, which places nearly every known fossil and living species in a formal hierarchy, is one of the most widely used among herpetologists and paleontologists. When I was a graduate student at Harvard's Museum of Comparative Zoology, I was fortunate to have a study carrel around the corner from Romer's office. He was always ready to talk about his first love, the evolution of mammallike reptiles, at coffee break when he and the other senior paleontologist, Bryan Patterson, a pioneer in the analysis of Mid Cretaceous mammal teeth, sat on the basement stoop with the students and staff.

Meandering rivers spread layers of sand on top of the mineral-rich muds accumulated on the lifeless lake bottoms. Dinosaurs were there. Small hunters from chicken to ostrich size prowled along the stream edges, hunting for their prey, leaving their unmistakable three-toed footprints and, very rarely, leaving behind their bony carcasses to be buried by Chugwater sand. In those days, the dinosaurs' empire was in its infancy. The evolutionary pioneers of the Dinosauria had to share this terrestrial realm with a host of short-legged and ugly reptiles, the beaked rhynchosaurs, the dog-faced cynodonts, and the dinosaurs' own ancestral stock, the big-headed thecodonts.

In zoos, coyotes and wolves will mate and give healthy hybrids, but in the wild the two usually keep their genes to themselves. Thus, wolf and coyote are scored as separate species. When we count the total number of species in the Reptilia or Mammalia, we are scoring the number of different ecological roles filled by that class. We should send those barroom detractors who believe that reptiles are a moribund class into the tropical forests, armed with checklists, nets, and binoculars. Let the mammal chauvinists count species; the results will sober them up.

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The Dinosaur Heresies: New Theories Unlocking the Mystery of the Dinosaurs and Their Extinction by Robert T. Bakker


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