Hence, they are of great interest in understanding the evolution of gigantism and the biophysical constraints acting upon terrestrial life (Clauss ;Sander et al. The unique gigantism of sauropod dinosaurs was made possible by a high basal . in Amniote Paleobiology: Perspectives on the Evolution of Mammals, Birds. Biology of the Sauropod Dinosaurs reports on the latest results from Sauropod Biology and the Evolution of Gigantism: What Do We Know?.

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Sauropoda – Wikipedia

Various research looking at the problem from aspects, such as the gigantim articulation of the neck vertebra and estimating the range of motion, the metabolic and energy requirements of having incredibly long necks, and comparison to living animals, have come to different conclusions. Biological consequences of Mesozoic atmospheres: The brachiosaur giants of the Morrison and Tendaguru with a description of a new subgenus, Giraffatitanand a comparison of the world’s largest dinosaurs.

The selective advantage of the long neck of sauropods was the ability to exploit food sources that could not be reached by other herbivores or by smaller individuals of the same species and a considerably energy savings in feeding as opposed to moving the whole body while feeding.

Cheirolepidiaceae and related male organ genera from the Lower Cretaceous of Spain. evopution

Biology of the sauropod dinosaurs: the evolution of gigantism

Among several possible approaches, we chose the resource perspective because it has been shown that resource availability and maximal body size correlate closely Burness et al. Sinclair dinosaur expedition, Studies on feed digestibilities in captive Asian elephants Elephas maximus.


News in Physiological Science. Missing data points for body mass are either due to lumping of data from two stages i. Although energetic scaling effects and gigantothermy may have represented a contributing factor to gigantism, saving resources by having been bradymetabolic throughout ontogeny as the explanation for sauropod gigantism thus must be rejected contra McNab, This also would have applied to other forest-forming plant groups such as the various families of conifers.

Seeley found that the sauropid were very lightly constructed for their size and contained openings for air sacs pneumatization.

The beautifully preserved vertebra is seen in left lateral view. Inthe most complete sauropod yet was found and described by Othniel Charles Marshwho named it Diplodocus.

MacLeod N, Keller G, editors. Dinosaurs and the Cretaceous terrestrial revolution. BMR, basal metabolic rate. In other projects Wikimedia Commons Wikispecies Wikiquote.

The sauropods’ most defining characteristic was their size. Blood supply, in turn, is controlled by the autonomous nervous system.

Biology of the sauropod dinosaurs: the evolution of gigantism.

Our aim for the third funding period is to test our gigantism hypothesis. The digestive performance of mammalian herbivores: Modern sedimentary environments of this kind are generally devoid of vertebrate life, and it remains unclear what the food base for the sauropods would have been. The large size of adult sauropods would also have obviated the need for chewing because the large body cavity would have provided enough room for the slower fermentation of the larger plant particles that were just bitten off, not chewed.


Beyond facilitating the evolution of the long neck, the hypothesized bird-like respiratory apparatus offers additional advantages, emerging as the second key evolutionary innovation. Other, less obvious constraints originating from mastication were discovered through the fermentation experiments of Hummel et al.

Biology of the sauropod dinosaurs: the evolution of gigantism – Semantic Scholar

An avian-style respiratory system would also have teh the cost of breathing, reduced specific gravity, and may have been important in removing excess body heat. The proximal limb elements humerus and femur were distinctly longer than the lower limb bones. The publication is available for free here.

Studies by Matthew Cobley et al revealed, using computer modeling, that muscle attachments and cartilage present in the neck would likely have limited the flexibility to a considerable degree. Particularly in Upper Jurassic and Lower Cretaceous peritidal carbonate rocks, so-called megatracksites are preserved that cover thousands of square kilometers and show that sauropods lived in or migrated into the tidal flats several hundred kilometres from the nearest coast.

Alistair Crame; Geological Society of London Atmospheric CO 2 as a global change driver influencing plant-animal interactions. On the contrary, the heat flow models e.