Contents

1 Classification 1

1.1 Introduction 1

1.2 Amphibians 3

1.3 Reptiles 3

1.4 Note on Coloration 7

2 Diversification of Palaeozoic Reptiles 9

2.1 Introduction 9

2.2 Continental Drift 10

2.3 Reptilian Ancestors 10

2.4 Anapsid Reptiles 12

2.5 Synapsid Reptiles 14

3 The Mesozoic Environment 19

3.1 Introduction 19

3.2 The Triassic Period 20

3.3 The Jurassic and Cretaceous Periods 20

4 Amphibious and Early Marine Mesozoic Reptiles 23

4.1 Introduction 23

4.2 Locomotion 24

4.3 Testudines 26

4.3.1 Respiration 27

4.3.2 Evolution 28

4.4 Placodonts and Nothosaurs 29

4.4.1 Placodonts 29

4.4.2 Nothosaurs 31

4.4.3 Claudiosaurians 33

4.5 Thalattosaurs, Mosasaurs and Other Sea Lizards 34

4.6 Champsosaurs, Phytosaurs and Crocodilians 36

4.6.1 Choristodera 36

4.6.2 Phytosaurs 37

4.6.3 Crocodilians 38

5 Plesiosaurs and Ichthyosaurs 45

5.1 Introduction 45

5.2 Swimming 46

5.2.1 Plesiosaurs 46

5.2.2 Ichthyosaurs 48

5.3 Plesiosaurs 51

5.3.1 Plesiosaur Diversification 51

5.4 Ichthyosaurs 54

5.4.1 Ichthyosaur Diversification 55

5.5 Conclusions 59

6 Aerial Mesozoic Reptiles 61

6.1 Introduction 61

6.2 Gliding Reptiles 63

6.3 Pterosaur Flight 67

6.4 Locomotion on the Ground 70

6.4.1 Bipedal Locomotion 70

6.4.2 Quadrupedal Locomotion 71

6.5 Rhamphorynchoids 72

6.6 Pterodactyloids 77

6.6.1 Cretaceous Pterosaurs 79

6.7 Life Styles 82

6.7.2 Reproduction 83

6.8 Extinction 85

7 Terrestrial Mesozoic Reptiles:

Size, Locomotion and Thermal Physiology 89

7.1 Introduction 89

7.2 Quadrupedal Locomotion 89

7.3 Bipedal Locomotion 90

7.4 Weight and Size Limits 92

7.5 Thermal Physiology 99

7.5.1 Behavioural Thermoregulation 100

7.5.2 Thermoregulatory Structures 102

7.6 Tachymetabolism 103

7.6.1 Anatomical Evidence 104

7.6.2 Bone Histology 105

7.6.3 Energy Flow and Predator: Prey Ratios 107

7.6.4 Palaeolatitudinal Distribution 109

7.7 Bradymetabolic Thermoregulation 110

7.8 Hair and Feathers 111

7.9 Conclusions 111

8 Therapsids, Anapsids and Early Diapsids 113

8.1 Introduction 113

8.2 Therapsids and the Origin of Mammals 113

8.3 Anapsids 116

8.4 Early Diapsids 117

8.4.1 Lepidosauria 117

8.4.2 Squamata 118

8.4.3 Early Archosauromorphs 120

9 The Dinosaurs: Weapons, Display and Reproduction 125

9.1 The Earliest Dinosaurs 125

9.2 Dinosaur Weapons 128

9.2.1 Weapons of Attack 128

9.2.2 Defensive Weapons 130

9.2.3 Defensive Display 135

9.3 Reproduction 136

9.3.1 Agonistic Behaviour 136

9.3.2 Courtship and Mating 142

9.3.3 Nesting Behaviour 143

9.3.4 Growth and Development 147

10 Herbivorous Dinosaurs 149

10.1 Introduction 149

10.2 Teeth, Gastroliths and Digestion 149

10.3 Basal Sauropodomorphs - Prosauropods 151

10.4 Sauropods 153

10.5 Herbivorous Bipeds 156

10.5.1 Fabrosaurids and Heterodontosaurids 157

10.5.2 Hypsilophodontids 158

10.5.3 Iguanodontids 160

10.5.4 Hadrosaurids 160

10.5.5 Psittacosaurids 162

10.5.6 Pachycephalosaurians 163

10.6 Horned, Plated and Armoured Dinosaurs 163

10.6.1 Ceratopsians 163

10.6.2 Stegosaurs 165

10.6.3 Ankylosaurs 166

10.7 Conclusions 168

11 Carnivorous Dinosaurs 171

11.1 Introduction 171

11.2 Dentition 171

11.3 Ceratosaurs 172

11.3.1 Maniraptora 174

11.3.2 Dromaeosaurids 176

11.3.3 Troodontids 177

11.3.4 Therizinosaurids - Segnosaurs 178

11.4 Carnosaurs 179

11.4.1 Predation and Scavenging 180

11.4.2 Megalosaurids 181

11.4.3 Spinosaurids 181

11.4.4 Allosaurids 183

11.4.5 Tyrannosaurids 184

11.5 The Origin of Birds 185

11.5.1 Feathers 186

11.5.2 Flight 187

11.6 Conclusions 188

12 TheCretaceousExtinction 189

12.1 Introduction 189

12.1.1 Mass Extinctions 189

12.1.2 The Permian Extinction 190

12.1.3 The Triassic Extinction 191

12.2 Terminal Mesozoic Events 191

12.3 Dinosaur Extinction: Improbable Hypotheses 192

12.4 Cataclysmal Hypotheses 193

12.4.1 Impact with a Meteorite or Bolide 194

12.5 Gradualist Hypotheses 195

12.5.1 Longevity, Injuries and Disease 196

12.5.2 Nutritional Factors 197

12.5.3 Thermal Effects 197

12.6 Conclusions 199

Epilogue 201

Bibliography 203

Subject Index 213

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