Bones: the unity of form and function
From the perspective of an engineer admiring the girders of a bridge or parts of a machine, Bones celebrates how animals work. In tribute to both the beauty and mechanics of its subject, the book explores the structure, material, and movement of bones as they serve the design of living animals. It examines the composition of bone material, looks at the joints and muscle attachments that allow for movement - including such elaborate mechanisms as fish jaws, rattlesnake fangs, and a lion's retractable claws - and shows how the same bone is shaped wildly differently in a variety of animals. It explains how bones grow as the body grows yet remain strong and functional throughout an animal's life, and delves into the amazing variety of patterns and textures bones display. A wealth of specially commissioned color plates complements the text, showing bones as they have seldom before been observed. Their precise, luminous images range from the unusual (the skeleton of a Pygmy Flying Squirrel) to the ordinary (the tail bones of a domestic cat), and from the enormous (the vertebra of a dinosaur) to the minuscule (the acoustic bones of a Desert Kangaroo Rat). With its exceptional blend of lively science and unexpected beauty, Bones leaves readers with insight into the workings of the skeleton and a sense of wonder at their intricacy, while its images remain haunting and unforgettable.
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Foreword by Mark A Norell
Strength with Lightness
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amphibians animals antlers attached back teeth bend birds bite body bones plate bony braincase carnassials cartilage catfishes chapter chewing collagen compression cusps degrees of freedom dentary dentine diameter dinosaurs eardrum edge engineering epiphyses Eusthenopteron evolution evolved example femur fish flexible force fossil front function groove hinge hollow horns horse human inches incisors jaw joint jaw muscles kneecap layer leg bones ligament lion look lower jaw mammals material mechanical advantage meters millimeters million years ago moas molars mole move movement nasal nostrils ostrich Parasaurolophus pattern piranha premaxillae prey pterosaurs pull pythons rear relatively reptiles rodents scales shaped side skeleton skin skull skull plate skull roof snout socket sound species stapes strain strain gauges strength stress stretched strong structure surfaces swimbladder synapsid teleosts temporalis tendon tensile tibia tiny tooth traction epiphyses turtle upper jaw vertebrae vibrations Weberian ossicles windpipe wings