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Bone Histology of Fossil Tetrapods

Advancing Methods, Analysis, and Interpretation

Kevin Padian (Editor), Ellen-Thérèse Lamm (Editor)


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The microscopic examination of fossilized bone tissue is a sophisticated and increasingly important analytical tool for understanding the life history of ancient organisms. This book provides an essential primer and manual for using fossil bone histology to investigate the biology of extinct tetrapods. Twelve experts summarize advances in the field over the past three decades, reviewing fundamental basics of bone microanatomy and physiology. Research specimen selection, thin-section preparation, and data analysis are addressed in detail. The authors also outline methods and issues in bone growth rate calculation and chronological age determination, as well as how to examine broader questions of behavior, ecology, and evolution by studying the microstructure of bone.

Praise For Bone Histology of Fossil Tetrapods: Advancing Methods, Analysis, and Interpretation

"This book stands out as the best single source for practical guidance on fossil bone histology, as well as the best current review of where the field stands. . . . Highly recommended."

— S. L. Brusatte

University of California Press, 9780520273528, 298pp.

Publication Date: March 19, 2013

About the Author

Kevin Padian is Professor of Integrative Biology at the University of California, Berkeley and Curator at the UC Museum of Paleontology. Ellen-Thérèse Lamm is Histology Laboratory Manager at the Museum of the Rockies in Bozeman, Montana.