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A Concise Natural History

3rd Edition

$79.99 (X)

  • Date Published: November 2016
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781316501153

$ 79.99 (X)

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About the Authors
  • The ideal textbook for non-science majors, this lively and engaging introduction encourages students to ask questions, assess data critically and think like a scientist. Building on the success of the previous editions, Dinosaurs has been reorganised and extensively rewritten in response to instructor and student feedback. It continues to make science accessible and relevant through its clear explanations and extensive illustrations. Updated to reflect recent fossil discoveries and to include new taxa, the text guides students through the dinosaur groups, emphasising scientific concepts rather than presenting endless facts. It is grounded in the common language of modern evolutionary biology - phylogenetic systematics - so that students examine dinosaurs as professional paleontologists do. The key emerging theme of feathered dinosaurs, and the many implications of feathers, have been integrated throughout the book, highlighted by the inclusion of stunning new photographs in this beautifully illustrated text, now in full colour throughout.

    • Unlike other introductory books, Dinosaurs is not a list of facts and figures but instead is concept-based, encouraging students to consider dinosaurs as a series of scientific questions to be answered
    • Addresses the paleontology of dinosaurs exactly as the professionals in the field do, using phylogenetic systematic methods to reconstruct dinosaur relationships
    • Dinosaurs are brought to life in specially commissioned drawings from the acclaimed dinosaur illustrator, John Sibbick
    • An accompanying website for instructors contains high-resolution figures, topic question answers and lecture tutorials
    Read more

    Reviews & endorsements

    '… the most comprehensive and useful text on dinosaurs on the market. It’s both authoritative and whimsical, providing the student with a great background on dinosaurs and on the sciences needed to understand them. It’s fun to read and great illustrations too.' Kevin Padian, University of California Museum of Paleontology, Berkeley

    'Dinosaurs is an awesome textbook for college students of any level. I use it in my Dinosaurs class, and it is excellent AND affordable!' Julia Sankey, California State University, Stanislaus

    '… a welcome updating and synthesis of what we currently know about the evolution and extinction of dinosaurs, both avian and non-avian. The extensive use of colorful illustrations, maps and graphics makes the text more lively and interesting, and increases its value as a teaching tool. I can unreservedly recommend this text for use in a Dinosaurs course, and plan to use it when I next teach my course on the subject.' William Gallagher, Rider University, New Jersey

    '… a must-have for dinosaur courses, and I am excited to use the third edition in my class. The already all-encompassing, logically organized, and beautifully illustrated book now has color photographs and is updated with the latest science. Without a doubt it is the best book for college-level dinosaur classes.' James Parham, California State University, Fullerton

    'The writing style is entertaining and the figures are engaging. … Dinosaurs not only exposes students to the wonders of the field in ample depth, but also reinforces major biological principles that many students would otherwise only have limited exposure to.' Domenic D’Amore, Daemen College, New York

    'Because they inspire a natural fascination, dinosaurs may be one of the best groups of organisms to help expose undergraduate students to general scientific principles. The latest edition of Fastovsky and Weishampel’s textbook provides an an accessible yet thorough introduction into subjects spanning biology and earth science, using dinosaur evolution as its guide. The large number and clarity of John Sibbick’s figures elevate this book well above its competitors.' Leon Claessens, College of the Holy Cross, Massachusetts

    '… an essential library addition for anyone with an interest in dinosaurs and you don’t have to be a science major to enjoy its contents. Thoroughly recommended.' Roger Smith, Dinosaurnews (

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    Product details

    • Edition: 3rd Edition
    • Date Published: November 2016
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781316501153
    • dimensions: 280 x 220 x 22 mm
    • weight: 1.38kg
    • contains: 366 colour illus. 3 tables
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. Remembrance of Things Past:
    1. To catch a dinosaur
    2. Dinosaur days
    3. Who's related to whom - and how do we know?
    4. Who are the dinosaurs?
    5. Dinosaurs: in the beginning
    Part II. Saurischia: Meat, Might and Magnitude:
    6. Theropoda I: nature red in tooth and claw
    7. Theropoda II: meet the theropods
    8. Theropoda III: the origin and early evolution of birds
    9. Sauropodomorpha: the big, the bizarre, and the majestic
    Part III. Ornithischia: Armored, Horned, and Duck-Billed Dinosaur:
    10. Thyreophorans: the armor-bearers
    11. Marginocephalia: bumps, bosses, and beaks
    12. Ornithopoda: mighty masticators of the Mesozoic
    Part IV. Endothermy, Endemism, and Extinction:
    13. Dinosaur thermoregulation: some like it hot
    14. The flowering of the Mesozoic
    15. A history of paleontology through ideas
    16. The Cretaceous-Tertiary extinction: the frill is gone
    Index of subjects
    Index of genera.

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    David E. Fastovsky, David B. Weishampel

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  • Authors

    David E. Fastovsky, University of Rhode Island
    David E. Fastovsky is Professor and Chair of the Department of Geosciences at the University of Rhode Island. His interest in dinosaurs began in his early years when he read about a paleontologist's adventures in the Gobi Desert early in the twentieth century. He has carried out fieldwork all over the world. He is known as a dynamic teacher as well as a respected researcher on the environments in which dinosaurs roamed, as well as their extinction.

    David B. Weishampel, The Johns Hopkins University
    David B. Weishampel is Professor at the Center for Functional Anatomy and Evolution at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. His research focuses on dinosaur evolution and how dinosaurs function, and he is particularly interested in herbivorous dinosaurs and the dinosaur record of Europe. He is senior editor of The Dinosauria and has contributed to a number of popular publications, including acting as consultant to Michael Crichton in the writing of The Lost World, the inspiration for Steven Spielberg's film Jurassic Park. He was recently honoured in an International Symposium on duck-billled dinosaurs, dedicated to him and his research.

    Illustrated by

    John Sibbick
    John Sibbick has been creating illustrations of extinct life forms and their environments for over thirty years, producing numerous books on dinosaurs, as well as pterosaurs, and general books on prehistoric life. His work has appeared in scientific magazines, television documentaries and museums, and featured on a set of stamps depicting dinosaurs and other prehistoric reptiles for the United Kingdom's Royal Mail.

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