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Presents the most recent work of renowned evolutionary scientist and dinosaur illustrator Gregory Paul, and synthesizes the growing body of evidence which suggests that modern-day birds have evolved from theropod dinosaurs of prehistoric times.
Contents: Preface PART I : Getting Started Chapter 1: A History Chapter 2: The Science of Bird Origins PART II: Skeletons, Bones and Other Remains of the Mesozoic Chapter 3: Skulls Chapter 4: Skeletons Chapter 5: Feathers and Other Fluff PART III: Flight: How and Why it Evolves, Why it is Lost, and How to Tell When Chapter 6: The Beginnings of Flight: From the Ground Up, or the Trees Down? Chapter 7: The Early Evolution of Flight Chapter 8: The Loss of Flight PART IV: The Archaeopteryx problem Chapter 9: Lifestyle for the Urvogel PART V: Who Is Related to Whom, and Why? Chapter 10: Looking for the True Bird Ancestor Chapter 11: Were Some Dinosaurs Neoflightless Birds? Chapter 12: A Look at the Phylogenetics of Predatory Dinosaurs PART VI: A Modest Scenario Chapter 13: The Mesozoic Chapter 14: The Great Extinction Chapter 15: The Cenozoic Appendix Bibliography Index
Gregory S. Paul is a freelance scientist and scientific illustrator specializing in dinosaur evolution. Illustrations from his book Predatory Dinosaurs of the World, along with specific skeletal studies of theropods he was commissioned to prepare, were used in the making of the Jurassic Park movies.
Paul has succeeded in producing a beautiful book that will be an invaluable reference for those interested in avian origins for many years to come. -- Graham K. Taylor Ibis If you want to dig seriously into one of today's most fascinating evolutionary debates, and aren't afraid of anatomy, you'll delight in Dinosaurs of the Air. New Scientist 2002