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Body Size in Mammalian Palaeobiology: Estimation and Biological Implications

Handbook / Manual

Edited By: J Damuth and BJ MacFadden

409 pages, Figs

Cambridge University Press

Paperback | Sep 2005 | #156120 | ISBN: 0521019338
Availability: Usually dispatched within 1-2 weeks Details
NHBS Price: £40.99 $50/€46 approx
Hardback | Feb 1991 | #12621 | ISBN: 0521360994
Availability: Usually dispatched within 6 days Details
NHBS Price: £103.00 $126/€115 approx

About this book

There is a growing interest in the biological implications of body size in animals. This parameter is now being used to make inferences and predictions about not only the habits and habitat of a particular species, but also as a way to understand patterns and biases in the fossil record. This valuable collection of essays presents and evaluates techniques of body-mass estimation and reviews current and potential applications of body-size estimates in paleobiology. Coverage is particularly detailed for carnivores, primates and ungulates, but information is also presented on marsupials, rodents and proboscideans. Body Size in Mammalian Paleobiology will prove useful to researchers and graduate students in paleontology, mammalogy, ecology and evolution programmes. It is designed to be both a practical handbook for researchers making and using body-size estimates, and a sourcebook of ideas for applying body size to paleontological problems and directions for future research.

...reveals how much wider is the scope of palaeobiology than just humans and human origins, or even primates. It is a book with an honest approach, always vigilant that it is treading along a slippery path. Practioners of palaeobiology will find it useful for having assembled a recondite set of facts and for its deliberate cautiousness. Nature "...valuable because it identifies some of the promise and the problems of a new research program in paleobiology..." Quarterly Review of Biology "...provides a very useful and significant reference about a variety of mammalian groups and a variety of methodological approaches to the estimation of body size in these taxa." Matthew J. Ravosa, International Journal of Primatology


1. Introduction J. Damuth and B. MacFadden; Part I. The Biological Significance of Mammalian Body Size: 2. The physiological significance of body size B. K. McNab; 3. The behavioral/ecological significance of body size J. F. Eisenberg; 4. The functional anatomy of body weight T. Grand; 5. Evolutionary strategies and body size in a guild of mammals V. C. Maiorana; 6. The cotton rat model R. A. Martin; Part II. The Estimation of Mammalian Body Mass: 7. Methods and problems in estimating body size in fossil primates W. Jungers; 8. Structural allometry of the lower limb bones in the Anthropoidea C. Ruff; 9. Skeletal and dental predictors of body weight in carnivores B. Van Valkenburgh; 10. Estimates of body size for insular dwarf mammoths V. L. Roth; 11. Skeletal dimensions of ungulates as predictors of body weight K. M. Scott; 12. Correlation of body weight in ungulates with cranio-dental variables C. Janis; 13. Problems with using tooth size to estimate the body size of fossil mammals M. Fortelius; 14. Problems in estimating body masses of archaic fossil ungulates using dental measurements J. Damuth; 15. Body-size estimates and size distribution of ungulates (Mammalia) from the Late Miocene Love Bone Bed, Florida B. J. MacFadden and R. C. Hulbert; 16. Summary: discussion and recommendations for body-mass estimation J. Damuth and B. J. MacFadden; Appendices: data and equations for body-mass estimation.

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