Download e-book for kindle: Amphibian Evolution: The Life of Early Land Vertebrates by Rainer R. Schoch

By Rainer R. Schoch

ISBN-10: 0470671777

ISBN-13: 9780470671771

This booklet specializes in the 1st vertebrates to beat land and their lengthy trip to turn into totally self reliant from the water. It lines the starting place of tetrapod positive factors and attempts to provide an explanation for how and why they reworked into organs that let lifestyles on land. even supposing the foremost body of the subject lies some time past 370 million years and inevitably bargains with many fossils, it really is faraway from limited to paleontology. the purpose is to accomplish a entire photo of amphibian evolution. It specializes in significant questions in present paleobiology: how diversified have been the early tetrapods? during which environments did they stay, and the way did they arrive to be preserved? What will we learn about the delicate physique of extinct amphibians, and what does that let us know concerning the evolution of an important organs throughout the transition to land? How did early amphibians improve and develop, and that have been the most important components in their evolution?

The Topics in Paleobiology Series is released in collaboration with the Palaeontological organization, and is edited through Professor Mike Benton, collage of Bristol.

Books within the sequence supply a precis of the present kingdom of information, a relied on course into the first literature, and may act as tips for destiny instructions for learn. in addition to volumes on person teams, the sequence also will take care of issues that experience a cross-cutting relevance, comparable to the evolution of important ecosystems, specific key occasions and occasions within the heritage of existence, weather swap, and the applying of a brand new suggestions equivalent to molecular palaeontology.

The books are written via best overseas specialists and should be pitched at a degree appropriate for complicated undergraduates, postgraduates, and researchers in either the paleontological and organic sciences.

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Sample text

In the stem group of amniotes, such costal ventilation evolved as a key adaptation. It was a further major step in making amniotes more independent of the water, although many stem-amniotes still hatched from waterborne eggs. Another, more obvious feature of these taxa is their elongate body: the number of vertebrae in the trunk skeleton is usually well beyond 30, ­contrasting with the situation in temnospondyls, the putative lissamphibian stem group, which mostly had 24. The rib basket of stem-amniotes was evidently more rigid and probably could assist the limbs in moving by lateral flexion.

Osteoderms may be isolated or arranged in rows, and sometimes form a carapace-like shield. ” Apart from protection, they may provide attachment surface for muscles, such as for ­stabilization of the vertebral column during locomotion (Dilkes and Brown 2007). Other functions may include protection against desiccation or against skin abrasion in burrowing species. Tetrapods and extant amphibians. A wide ­morphological gap separates early tetrapods and lissamphibians. 4). Associated with this is the absence of numerous cranial elements (jugal, postorbital, postfrontal, supratemporal, tabular, postparietal, ectopterygoid, supraoccipital, basisphenoid, basioccipital, and epipterygoid).

In bony fishes and their early tetrapod descendants, the dermal skull is composed of at least 43 elements, most of which occur in pairs. In modern salamanders, the number has been reduced to 21–23, in frogs to 19, and in gymnophionans to as few as 17. 3 Tetrapods then and now: (A) stem-amphibian Sclerocephalus; (B) stem-amniote Seymouria; (C) Jurassic s­ alamander Karaurus; (D) extant giant salamander Andrias. B by courtesy of Thomas Martens, C of Ralf Werneburg. (A) (B) (C) (D) Gill arches. The visceral skeleton is one of the most ancient structures of the vertebrate body plan.

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Amphibian Evolution: The Life of Early Land Vertebrates by Rainer R. Schoch

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