Glorified Dinosaurs: The Origin and Early Evolution of Birds

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9780471247234: Glorified Dinosaurs: The Origin and Early Evolution of Birds

The last few years have witnessed an unparalleled rate of discoveries of early birds and their dinosaurian predecessors. Written by a recognised authority in the field, Glorified Dinosaurs: The Origin and Early Evolution of Birds provides a comprehensive summary of these discoveries and addresses the fascinating topic of how modern birds evolved from fearsome dinosaurs akin to the celebrated Velociraptor. The book focuses on an evolutionary approach and presents current research and fossil discoveries. The title includes coloured photographs of fossils and fossil localities, many of which have been rarely reproduced elsewhere.

Glorified Dinosaurs: The Origin and Early Evolution of Birds is an invaluable resource for every palaeontologist, ornithologist, evolutionary biologist, geology and life sciences student. It is also an exciting reading for people interested in dinosaurs and avian evolution and for all those with a general interests in the topic.

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From the Back Cover:

"At last, an authoritative, detailed summary of the origin of birds! It reviews 100 + years of a major scientific controversy, especially the explosion of new findings that have characterized the last fifteen years. Chiappe has been in the middle of this recent revolution in our knowledge, and no one else could have written this book."
— Joel Cracraft, PhD
Lamont Curator and Curator-in-Charge Department of Ornithology
American Museum of Natural History New York, New York

"Luis Chiappe is without question the most knowledgeable person in the world on bird fossils from the Age of Dinosaurs, and this book is an opportunity for him to share his discoveries with a broad audience. The personal involvement of the author in many of these discoveries gives the text a special touch and allows the reader to understand how these discoveries were made."
— James M. Clark, PhD, Ronald Entrap Associate Professor and Chairman, Department of Biological Sciences, George Washington University, Washington DC

"Chiappe's challenge - to review the paleontological evidence spanning the origin of birds and the early phases of their evolutionary history - is truly ambitious, especially considering the explosion of discoveries made over the last few decades. Yet, despite this daunting challenge, Chiappe handles both evidence and the plethora of associated analyses and debates with an even-handedness that is rarely attempted and even more rarely attempted and even more rarely achieved in such expansive syntheses. Glorified Dinosaurs will undoubtedly set high new standards for synthetic reviews of this fascinating and rapidly burgeoning field of scientific research."
Lowell Dingus, PhD, Department of Paleontology, American Museum of Natural History, New York, New York

"In my opinion, Glorified Dinosaurs by Luis Chiappe, an internationally renowned specialist in pale ornithology, is a superb and comprehensive review of our present knowledge on the origin and early (Mesozoic) evolution of birds and their flight. The book will certainly be well received by the international scientific community of paleontologists and biologists. University lecturers will be delighted to have such rich and up-to-date material on this important topic at hand in one book for their courses. The still-disputed problem of avian origins and early evolution has become very popular in recent years. This book will help to settle the controversies and will fill a gap in the book shelves of a wide audience, finally."
— Peter Wellnhofer, PhD, Bavarian State Collection of Paleontology and Historical Geology, Munich, Germany

From the Inside Flap:

Within just the last few years it has been established beyond doubt that birds evolved from dinosaurs. Glorified Dinosaurs celebrates the unfolding of this story as it tracks the recent and unparalleled rate of discoveries of early birds and their dinosaurian predecessors from all over the world. The book provides a summary of these extraordinary discoveries and discusses how modern birds evolved from fearsome meat-eating dinosaurs ak in to the celebrated Velociraptor.
Lavishly illustrated and in full color throughout, it contains more than 220 illustrations, including many reconstructions of animals and skeletons, as well as photos of fossils and fossil localities,maps, charts, cladograms, and other line drawings.
Luis Chiappe's evolutionary approach highlights the main characters in the long evolutionary saga of birds and discusses their physical changes in the context of functional advances. Much of this research and the fossil discoveries detailed in this book are new to the public and have not been published in book form previously.

"Exquisite, wonderful, engaging - what more can I ay about a book that rivets the scientist and will be enjoyed by amateur and professional ornithologists/ naturalists the world around. Chiappe has beautifully summarized in words, high-quality photographs, and excellent reconstructions the rich record of fossil birds that has exploded in the last decade. His book is simply a masterpiece presenting front-line, detailed paleontologic research in a very readable and accessible manner."
— Patricia Vickers-Rich, PhD, Director, Monash Science Centre, Monash University, Melbourne, Australia

"Glorified Dinosaurs is an Exciting and thorough survey of the revolutionary discoveries in the field of avian origins. It will be a great read for birders, paleontology buffs, and evolution enthusiasts."
— Richard O. Prum, PhD. William Robertson Coe Professor of Ornithology, Department of Ecology and Evolutionary biology, Peabody Natural History Museum, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut

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Chiappe, Luis M.
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