Body Size in Mammalian Paleobiology: Estimation and Biological Implications

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John Douglas Damuth, Bruce J. MacFadden
Cambridge University Press, Nov 30, 1990 - Nature - 397 pages
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This valuable collection of essays presents and evaluates techniques of body-mass estimation and reviews current and potential applications of body-size estimates in paleobiology. Papers discuss explicitly the errors and biases of various regression techniques and predictor variables, and the identification of functionally similar groups of species for improving the accuracy of estimates. At the same time other chapters review and discuss the physiological, ecological, and behavioral correlates of body size in extant mammals; the significance of body-mass distributions in mammalian faunas; and the ecology and evolution of body size in particular paleofaunas. Coverage is particularly detailed for carnivores, primates, and ungulates, but information is also presented on marsupials, rodents, and proboscideans.
 

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Contents

The physiological significance of body size
11
The behavioralecological significance of body size in
25
The functional anatomy of body mass
39
Evolutionary strategies and body size in a guild
69
Problems and methods in reconstructing body size in
103
Body mass and hindlimb bone crosssectional and
119
Skeletal and dental predictors of body mass in carnivores
181
Problems with using fossil teeth to estimate body sizes of
207
Problems in estimating body masses of archaic ungulates
229
Correlation of cranial and dental variables with body size
255
Postcranial dimensions of ungulates as predictors of
301
Body size estimates and size distribution of ungulate
337
Prediction equations
365
Index
391
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