Tetrapod Zoology

Archives for July, 2009

A little while ago, news of a new paper by Devon Quick and John Ruben, both of Oregon State University, appeared on the newswires. It got its fair share of publicity. Entitled ‘Cardio-pulmonary anatomy in theropod dinosaurs: implications from extant archosaurs’, the paper (Quick & Ruben 2009) purports to show that modern birds are fundamentally…

Dromomerycids: discuss

You don’t hear much about dromomerycids these days, it’s always protoceratids hogging all the limelight. Here’s one of the more obscure forms, the derived cranioceratin dromomerycine Procranioceras skinneri from the Miocene of the USA (originally named as a member of the speciose genus Cranioceras).

A few posts ago the subject of giraffes and lightning came up in the comments (go here, and scroll down to comments 7, 9 and 10). Thanks to an aborted book project that I’ve mentioned once or twice (I try not to talk about it too much, it still hurts), I have voluminous files on…

I have to say I really hate it when I see a blog post with an interesting title that concerns a complicated subject, only to find – on going to all that trouble of moving my fingers, clicking on the link, and waiting all of three or so seconds for the page to load –…

We flightless primates

Some time during the last several hours (while I was asleep), Tet Zoo reached the three million hits mark. Yes, three million hits in two years (Tet Zoo ver 2 was launched on Jan 31st 2007). A noble achievement, I’m sure you’ll agree. Due to workload and assorted other commitments, I still don’t have anything…

The naming of new amphibian species is a fairly routine thing. This doesn’t mean that – despite the global amphibian crisis – amphibians are actually ok and that we can stop worrying; it means that we haven’t been paying enough attention, and indeed many of the species that are being named anew are endangered, or…

The newest whales

In time-honoured tradition, here are some slides from one of my talks. They’re self-explanatory, but let me know if elaboration is required…

Back in April 2008 (my god – where does the time go?) I wrote a brief article about the Animal Life and The Private Lives of Animals books, published by Casa Editrice AMZ. These first came out during the late 1960s and were written in Italian; they were then translated into English during the 70s.…

Like many of us, I’m sure, I have a great interest in the life-sized replica cetaceans that have often been made for museum displays. Making such models is an incredibly skilled process with an honourable tradition, and it requires a huge amount of research and experience if the results are to be at all accurate.…

Dinosaurs of Italy!

I’m really suffering from lack of time, so here’s another book review (first published in 2005, so with a few updates added here and there)… Lacking the Mesozoic dinosaur record of Britain, France, Germany, Portugal or Spain, our Italian colleagues have long had to make do with Triassic marine reptiles, Cretaceous squamates, and assorted Neogene…