Tetrapod Zoology

Archives for May, 2010

If you’re a regular reader you’ll have seen the recent article on those freaky, terrifying versions of the azhdarchid pterosaur Quetzalcoatlus from the 1970s and 80s. We looked at Guy Michel’s version from 1979 and Richard Orr’s spectacularly colourful rendition from 1984. My friend Paul Glynn reminded me recently that there’s another version out there:…

Yet another ‘sea monster carcass’ was brought to my attention recently (thanks Paul), and in the interests of tradition and of bringing it to a wider audience I thought I should include it here (I’m very late to the party: Cryptomundo discussed the case when it broke three years ago). Dubbed the ‘Conakry Monster’, it…

Yet again, a waterlogged, partially decomposed mammal carcass has become “an internet sensation” (to quote the popular media), and yet again people are saying it might be a new ‘Montauk monster’, or a Chupacabras, or a relative of Nessie, or Ogopogo, or a baby sasquatch, or some other sort of ungodly monster. The back-story is…

By now, it’s reasonably well known to interested people what azhdarchid pterosaurs looked like when alive. The answer: sort of like a cross between a giraffe and a stork, though with all of this being over-ridden by uniquely pterosaurian weirdness; membranous wings supported by giant fingers, a large cranial crest, plantigrade feet, and so on.

Time to press on once more with gekkotan lizards, and again with yet more on the remarkable leaf-tailed geckos (Uroplatus) of Madagascar. So far, we’ve been introduced to these lizards and have also looked at their anatomical pecularities and on a little bit of their history within the herpetological literature [image below shows U. phantasticus…

I covered babirusas recently; you might have noticed. As you’ll know if you read those articles, Meijaard & Groves (2002a, b) argued a few years ago that Babyrousa babyrussa of tradition should actually be split up into several phylogenetic species. Coincidentally, I published an article on lumping vs splitting in extant mega-mammals only a few…

So, you’ve had an introduction to the incredible leaf-tailed geckos (Uroplatus). In view of their bizarre appearance, it’s perhaps not so surprising that leaf-tailed geckos have commanded attention for a long time and there’s a large historical literature on these animals (see Bauer & Russell (1989) for review) [U. fimbriatus shown here; image by J.…

Before I start, allow me to announce that Tet Zoo merchandise is now available! So far, I’ve only used the Tet Zoo logo for these products, but I might produce additional designs in time. Anyway… welcome to another article in the Tet Zoo gekkotan series. I really want to get through to the end without…

I came up with the idea recently of inventing a Tet Zoo logo, and a few friends and regular readers said that this was a good idea. Soooo….

A few days ago I visited my friends at the Centre for Fortean Zoology (for non-Tet Zoo-related reasons), and I particularly enjoyed looking at their amphiumas. Purely because I want to share the photos I took – well, and because amphiumas are weird, little known and really, really neat – I thought I’d say a…