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The vertebrate fossil record extends back more than 500 million years, and bonebeds – localized concentrations of the skeletal remains of vertebrate animals – help unlock the secrets of this long history. Often spectacularly preserved, bonebeds – both modern and ancient – can reveal more about life histories, ecological associations, and preservation patterns than any single skeleton or bone. For this reason, bonebeds are frequently studied by paleobiologists, geologists, and archeologists seeking to piece together the vertebrate record.
Thirteen respected researchers combine their experiences in Bonebeds, providing readers with workable definitions, theoretical frameworks, and a compendium of modern techniques in bonebed data collection and analysis. By addressing the historical, theoretical, and practical aspects of bonebed research, this edited volume – the first of its kind – provides the background and methods that students and professionals need to explore and understand these fantastic records of ancient life and death.
Chapter 1 A Conceptual Framework for the Genesis and Analysis of Vertebrate Skeletal Concentrations
Raymond R. Rogers and Susan M. Kidwell
Chapter 2 Bonebeds Through Time
Anna K. Behrensmeyer
Chapter 3 A Bonebeds Database: Classification, Biases, and Patterns of Occurrence
David A. Eberth, Matthew Shannon, and Brent G. Noland
Chapter 4 From Bonebeds to Paleobiology
Donald B. Brinkman, David A. Eberth, and Philip J. Currie
Chapter 5 A Practical Approach to the Study of Bonebeds
David A. Eberth, Raymond R. Rogers, and Tony R. Fiorillo
Chapter 6 Numerical Methods for Bonebed Analysis
Richard W. Blob and Catherine Badgley
Chapter 7 Trace Element Geochemistry of Bonebeds
Chapter 8 Stable Isotope Geochemistry of Bonebed Fossils: Reconstructing Paleoenvironments, Paleoecology, and Paleobiology
Raymond R. Rogers is professor in and chair of the geology department at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota. David A. Eberth is a senior research scientist at the Royal Tyrrell Museum in Drumheller, Alberta, Canada. Tony R. Fiorillo is a faculty member in the Department of Geological Sciences at Southern Methodist University and curator of paleontology at the Dallas Museum of Natural History, Dallas, Texas.
"Overall, this text conveys a wealth of interesting information about fossil assemblages, offering readers a broad perspective on the invaluable and unique insights that bonebeds can provide about environments and vertebrate life in the distant past. Accordingly, Bonebeds "presents an intriguing glimpse into one of the most fascinating aspects of paleontology. This volume will appeal to any reader with a serious interest in evolutionary history, paleontology, geology, and fossil collecting."
– Danny Brass, PRS