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A Field Guide to Mesozoic Birds and Other Winged Dinosaurs, a new book written and illustrated by paleoartist Matthew P. Martyniuk, is a comprehensive guide to the diverse fossil species spanning the evolutionary transition from the first feathered dinosaurs with wings in the mid-Jurassic period 160 million years ago, to the late Cretaceous period and the first modern birds.
Each caenagnathiform ("oviraptor"), deinonychosaurian ("raptor"), enantiornithean ("opposite bird"), and other winged prehistoric bird species is illustrated in multiple views with distinguishing characteristics highlighted, allowing readers to experience how these species may have differed from each other in life. The illustrations and technical descriptions in A Field Guide to Mesozoic Birds and Other Winged Dinosaurs will illuminate the various pathways and side branches bird evolution followed during its first 100 million years.
More than just a companion volume for paleo-birdwatching, A Field Guide to Mesozoic Birds and Other Winged Dinosaurs is intended as an valuable tool for readers interested in learning about bird evolution, comparative anatomy, and the biology of the first birds, as well as a quick-reference for artists and researchers interested in accurately restoring Mesozoic birds and their closest dinosaurian relatives.
Matthew P. Martyniuk is an illustrator and science educator specializing in Mesozoic birds and avian evolution. He has been drawing prehistoric flora and fauna since he first held a pencil, and became fascinated with the dinosaur/bird transition after discovering a copy of Gregory S. Paul's Predatory Dinosaurs of the World at his local library. His illustrations and diagrams have appeared in a variety of books, news articles, and television programs from Discovery, the Smithsonian, and the BBC, and he publishes the paleontological blog DinoGoss. He is a founding member of "Wikiproject Dinosaurs", an initiative to generate and curate scientifically precise content for the online encyclopedia Wikipedia.