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Academic & Professional Books  Palaeontology  Palaeozoology & Extinctions

Ichthyosaurs from the Early Jurassic of Britain

By: Graham P Weedon(Author), Sandra D Chapman(Author)
448 pages, 243 colour photos and colour & b/w illustrations, tables
Covering anatomy, palaeobiology, and a catalogue of all 21 species found in early Jurassic Britain, this is a serious and in-depth palaeontological monograph.
Ichthyosaurs from the Early Jurassic of Britain
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  • Ichthyosaurs from the Early Jurassic of Britain ISBN: 9781838152864 Hardback Nov 2022 Not in stock: Usually dispatched within 6 days
Price: £99.99
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Ichthyosaurs from the Early Jurassic of BritainIchthyosaurs from the Early Jurassic of BritainIchthyosaurs from the Early Jurassic of BritainIchthyosaurs from the Early Jurassic of Britain

About this book

Ichthyosaurs are iconic, extinct, marine reptiles that date from the Mesozoic Era when dinosaurs dominated the land. They formed a key part of marine ecosystems as secondary consumers and in some cases apex predators. Occasionally the preservation of fully-articulated skeletons including exceptionally their soft parts, allows the reconstruction of many details of ichthyosaur palaeobiology. The Early Jurassic of Britain provides arguably the best-known ~30-million-year portion of their 156-million-year history.

The first part of this book introduces the anatomy of ichthyosaurs, how they were fossilised, how the fossils are curated plus their global distribution in space and time. The second part provides a comprehensive, up-to-date review of all aspects of their palaeobiology including inferences about their genetics. The final part summarizes the characteristics of the twenty-one Early Jurassic species currently recognised in Britain including figures showing their spatial distribution and stratigraphic ranges. Appendices list the key specimens of British Early Jurassic ichthyosaurs. The book is illustrated with 243 colour photographs of ichthyosaur specimens with about forty per cent from the Natural History Museum, London.


Picture credits and copyright

Part 1 Ichthyosaur Specimens and Palaeontology

Chapter 1: Introduction
1.1 Ichthyosaur fossils
1.2 The anatomy of ichthyosaurs
    1.2a Introduction
    1.2b Skull
    1.2c Vertebral column and ribs
    1.2d Pectoral girdle and limbs
    1.2e Pelvic girdle and limbs

Chapter 2: Fossilization
2.1 Sea-floor processes and burial
2.2 Lagerstätten
2.3 Mineralization
2.4 Compaction
2.5 Soft part preservation

Chapter 3: Curating ichthyosaurs: management of the NHM collection
3.1 Introduction
3.2 Acquisitions
3.3 Documentation
3.4 Specimen- and drawer-labels
3.5 Electronic catalogue
3.6 Re-location of the collection
3.7 Valuations

Chapter 4: The occurrence of ichthyosaurs in time and space

Part 2 Ichthyosaur Palaeobiology

Chapter 5: Evolution
5.1 Introduction
5.2 Classification and phylogeny: relationships between ichthyosaur groups
5.3 Evolutionary history of ichthyosaurs
    5.3a Early Triassic: Ichthyosauriformes
    5.3b Early Triassic: Basal ichthyosaurs
    5.3c Middle to Late Triassic: Intermediate ichthyosaurs
    5.3d Late Triassic to mid Cretaceous: Euichthyosauria

Chapter 6: Reproduction, development and growth
6.1 Reproduction
6.2 Development and genetics
    6.2a Hox genes and body plans
    6.2b Tetrapod evolution and genetics
    6.2c Development of limbs in ichthyosaurs
    6.2d Development of the backbone in ichthyosaurs
6.3 Growth

Chapter 7: Vision and other senses
7.1 Vision
    7.1a Eyeball size, visual sensitivity and acuity
    7.1b Colour vision
7.2 Other senses

Chapter 8: Feeding and diet
8.1 Dentition and feeding guilds
8.2 Feeding strategies
8.3 Diet
    8.3a Information from coprolites
    8.3b Fish
    8.3c Cephalopods
                 Ammonoids and nautiloids

Chapter 9: Locomotion
9.1 Streamlining and skin structure
9.2 Limbs
9.3 Caudal fins
9.4 Swimming styles
9.5 Metabolism
9.6 Speed of sustained swimming

Chapter 10: Injury, disease, mortality and extinction
10.1 Injury and disease
10.2 Mortality
10.3 Extinction
Part 3 The Early Jurassic Ichthyosaurs of Britain

Chapter 11: Creation of the NHM British Early Jurassic ichthyosaur collection

Chapter 12: The geological context of British Early Jurassic ichthyosaurs
12.1 Palaeogeography and palaeoclimatology
    12.1a Sea level
    12.1b Climate
12.2 Sediment deposition and preservation of Early Jurassic ichthyosaurs
    12.2a Factors that inhibited the preservation of ichthyosaurs
    12.2b Marls and laminated shales
    12.2c Limestones and marls
12.3 Outline description of the stratigraphy of the Devon/Dorset coast (Lyme Regis to Seatown)
    12.3a Ammonites and biostratigraphy
    12.3b Lithostratigraphy
12.4 Stratigraphic records of Early Jurassic ichthyosaurs from Britain
    12.4a Records from Lyme Regis and Charmouth
    12.4b Records from other localities in southern England
12.5 Introduction to the species descriptions
    12.5a Nomenclature
    12.5b History of nomenclature
    12.5c Descriptions
    12.5d Potential for undescribed species

Chapter 13: Family Temnodontosauridae McGowan, 1974a
13.1 Genus Temnodontosaurus Lyddeker, 1889c
    13.1a Species Temnodontosaurus platyodon (Conybeare, 1822)
    13.1b Species Temnodontosaurus eurycephalus McGowan, 1974a
    13.1c Species Temnodontosaurus crassimanus (Blake, 1876)
    13.1d Species Temnodontosaurus acutirostris (Owen, 1840)

Chapter 14: Family Leptonectidae Maisch, 1998b
14.1 Genus Leptonectes McGowan, 1996b
    14.1a Species Leptonectes tenuirostris (Conybeare, 1822)
    14.1b Species Leptonectes solei (McGowan, 1993)
    14.1c Species Leptonectes moorei McGowan and Milner, 1999
14.2 Genus Excalibosaurus McGowan, 1986
    14.2a Species Excalibosaurus costini McGowan, 1986
14.3 Genus Eurhinosaurus Abel, 1909
    14.3a Species Eurhinosaurus longirostris (Mantell, 1851)
14.4 Genus Wahlisaurus Lomax, 2017
    14.4a Species Wahlisaurus massarae Lomax, 2017

Chapter 15: Family Ichthyosauridae Bonaparte, 1841
15.1 Genus Ichthyosaurus De la Beche and Conybeare, 1821
    15.1a Species Ichthyosaurus communis Conybeare, 1821
    15.1b Species Ichthyosaurus breviceps Owen, 1881
    15.1c Species Ichthyosaurus conybeari Lyddeker, 1888
    15.1d Species Ichthyosaurus anningae Lomax and Massare, 2015
    15.1e Species Ichthyosaurus larkini Lomax and Massare, 2017
    15.1f Species Ichthyosaurus somersetensis Lomax and Massare, 2017
15.2 Genus Protoichthyosaurus Appleby, 1979
    15.2a Species Protoichthyosaurus prostaxalis Appleby, 1979
    15.2b Species Protoichthyosaurus applebyi Lomax et al., 2017

Chapter 16: Family Stenopterygiidae Woodward in von Zittel, 1932
16.1 Genus Stenopterygius Jaekel, 1904
    16.1a Stenopterygius quadriscissus (Quenstedt, 1856)
    16.1b Stenopterygius triscissus (Quenstedt, 1856)
16.2 Genus Hauffiopteryx Maisch, 2008
    16.2a Species Hauffiopteryx typicus Maisch, 2008

Chapter 17: Synthesis: the distribution of Early Jurassic ichthyosaurs in Britain
    17.1 Distribution in space
    17.2 Distribution in time
    17.3 Ecological interactions

Appendix 1: Institutional catalogue codes
Appendix 2: Institutions possessing specimens of British Early Jurassic ichthyosaurs
Appendix 3: British specimens of genus Temnodontosaurus
Appendix 4: British specimens of genera Leptonectes, Wahlisaurus, Excalibosaurus and Eurhinosaurus
Appendix 5: British specimens of genera Ichthyosaurus and Protoichthyosaurus
Appendix 6: British specimens of genera Stenopterygius and Hauffiopteryx

Customer Reviews


Graham Weedon lectured on palaeontology as well as many other subjects at the University of Luton (now Bedfordshire) from 1992 to 2004. His other research interests include sedimentary cycles and palaeoclimates and his first book was Time-Series Analysis and Cyclostratigraphy (Cambridge University Press). He joined the Met Office in 2007.

Sandra Chapman is a Scientific Associate in the Earth Sciences Department at the Natural History Museum following over 35 years as the Curator of the Fossil Reptile and Bird Collections. She worked on the NHM Touring Exhibition ‘Ancient Oceans’ concerning life in the Jurassic seas using rare complete ichthyosaur and plesiosaur skeletons plus CGI. In 2020 she was the NHM consultant for the recent issue of 'Tales of the Earth’ by the Royal Mint of three collectable coins celebrating the iconic discoveries of Mary Anning. She co-authored Dippy: The Tale of a Museum Icon and is a contributing author to the Palaeontological Association Field Guides to Fossils of Lower Lias of the Dorset Coast and Fossils of the Kimmeridge Clay Formation.

By: Graham P Weedon(Author), Sandra D Chapman(Author)
448 pages, 243 colour photos and colour & b/w illustrations, tables
Covering anatomy, palaeobiology, and a catalogue of all 21 species found in early Jurassic Britain, this is a serious and in-depth palaeontological monograph.
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