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Tracking the Ancestors of Dinosaurs and Crocodiles
Illustrated by Matthew Celeskey
Published by: Indiana University Press
Comprehensive in detail and worldwide in scope, Chirotheres is the definitive compendium of what is known about the five-toed footprints of Triassic archosaurs, ancestors of the crocodiles. Sandstone slabs with extensive trackways have been known for almost two centuries and are highlights in museum exhibits around the globe. These trackways provide direct insight into the locomotion and behavior of the fascinating reptiles that made these tracks, and, together with known skeletons, they allow a richer reconstruction of chirothere lifestyle than is possible from bones alone.
Written by expert researchers in the fields of vertebrate ichnology, vertebrate paleontology, and scientific illustration, Chirotheres explores the various facets of chirothere research including the history of their study, footprint formation and preservation, the bone record, the environment and lifestyle of chirotheres, and finally, their disappearance at the end of the Triassic.
Chirotheres also features a global compendium of track collections with chirothere material, including specimen numbers, detailed phylogenetic definitions of track makers, and extensive measurements from key chirothere tracks and trackways. It represents an invaluable resource of anyone interested in these ancient animals.
PART I: Chirothere Tracks
2. History of Discovery and Research
3. Taphonomy and Preservation
4. Methods of Study and Documentation
5. Ichnotaxonomy and Classification
6. Chirothere Assemblages: Stratigraphic and Geographic Distribution
7. Biostratigraphy and Biogeography
PART II. Chirothere Trackmakers
8. Chirothere Trackmakers: History and Nature of the Body Fossil Record
9. Touring the Tree of Chirothere Trackmakers: The Bone Record
10. Environment and Lifestyle
11. Last of the Chirotheres and the Extinction of the Chirothere Trackmakers
Hendrik Klein is a researcher at Saurierwelt Paläontologisches Museum, Neumarkt, Germany. He is author of several volumes on chirothere and other tetrapod footprints for the New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science.
Andrew B. Heckert is professor of vertebrate paleontology in the Department of Geological & Environmental Sciences at Appalachian State University. He has coedited multiple volumes on Triassic stratigraphy and paleontology for the New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science.
Matthew D. Celeskey is a paleoartist and exhibition designer in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He is a research associate at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science, where he focuses on reconstructing Permian and Triassic fauna.
Chirotheres: Tracking the Ancestors of Dinosaurs and Crocodiles is a fantastic, comprehensive, treatment of chirothere tracks, something that has been sorely missing from the literature for some time. The book is accessible and engaging whilst being utterly comprehensive in its treatment of the subject.~Peter Falkingham, Liverpool John Moores University, UK