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The Rise of Amphibians: 365 Million Years of Evolution
     

The Rise of Amphibians: 365 Million Years of Evolution

by Robert Carroll
 

For nearly 100 million years, amphibians and their ancestors dominated the terrestrial and shallow water environments of the earth. Archaic animals with an amphibious way of life gave rise not only to modern frogs, salamanders, and caecilians but also to the ancestors of reptiles, birds, and mammals. In this landmark publication, one of the leading paleontologists

Overview

For nearly 100 million years, amphibians and their ancestors dominated the terrestrial and shallow water environments of the earth. Archaic animals with an amphibious way of life gave rise not only to modern frogs, salamanders, and caecilians but also to the ancestors of reptiles, birds, and mammals. In this landmark publication, one of the leading paleontologists of our time explores a pivotal moment in vertebrate evolution, the rise of amphibians.

Synthesizing findings from the rich and highly diverse fossil record of amphibians, Robert Carroll traces their origin back 365 million years, when particular species of fish traveled down an evolutionary pathway of fin modification that gave rise to legs. This period of dramatic radiation was followed by a cataclysmic extinction 250 million years ago. After a long gap, modern amphibian groups gradually emerged. Now the number of amphibian species and individuals throughout the tropical and temperate regions of the earth exceeds that of mammals.

The Rise of Amphibians is documented with more than two hundred illustrations of fossil amphibians and sixteen exquisite color plates depicting amphibians in their natural habitats throughout their long existence. The most comprehensive examination of amphibian evolution ever produced, The Rise of Amphibians is an essential resource for paleontologists, herpetologists, geologists, and evolutionary biologists.

Editorial Reviews

Copeia - Jason S. Anderson
This is the landmark work on the evolution of amphibians, and will be enjoyed and used for many years to come.

Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology - J. SéBastien Steyer
Bob Carroll is telling us, in a modern and very readable style, the history of the amphibians, with an osteological precision nobody else has. In fact, with this new book, he shows us he stays the same, our ‘Master Yoda of the amphibians.’

Herpetological Bulletin - Robert Carroll
Carroll has excelled himself by putting together such magnificent piece of work, with information that is balanced efficiently.

Herpetological Bulletin - Steven Piggott
Carroll has excelled himself by putting together such a magnificent piece of work, with information that is balanced efficiently.

Herpetological Bulletin
Carroll has excelled himself by putting together such a magnificent piece of work, with information that is balanced efficiently.

— Steven Piggott

Integrative and Comparative Biology - Hans-Dieter Sues
I highly recommend The Rise of Amphibians to anyone interested not only in amphibians but also in the evolutionary history of vertebrates in general.

Tuscaloosa News - Whit Gibbons
A high-quality production, with finely illustrated drawings of skulls, vertebrae, ribs, teeth, and long bones of more amphibians, past and present, than most of us imagined even existed.

Systematic Biology - Axel Janke
The Rise of Amphibians should be on the bookshelf of anyone involved in vertebrate evolution... an excellent source of information... It is a first-choice reference book that stimulates further studies and research.

Quarterly Review of Biology - Robert R. Reisz
Provides a wealth of valuable information about this fascinating history in a clear, easily readable style.

Bioscience - Miguel Vences
I enjoyed reading this fascinating book. It will become a landmark and standard reference in early amphibian evolution for years to come.

American Paleontologist - Richard Kissel
A useful reference catalog for the professional or well-read amateur.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780801891403
Publisher:
Johns Hopkins University Press
Publication date:
06/17/2009
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
392
Product dimensions:
8.80(w) x 11.00(h) x 1.30(d)

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What People are Saying About This

Hans-Dieter Sues
An excellent, comprehensive overview of the diversity and evolutionary history of amphibians. It reflects a lifetime of specimen-based research on and thinking about the subject by the foremost student of early evolution of land vertebrates.

Meet the Author

Robert Carroll, professor emeritus at McGill University, was the long-time director of the Redpath Museum and chairman of the Department of Biology and is a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. He is among the world’s most highly regarded experts on the evolution of amphibians and reptiles. Carroll is the author of several books, including Vertebrate Paleontology and Evolution.

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