[GEOLGY 307] - Midterm Exam Guide - Comprehensive Notes for the exam (23 pages long!)

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GEOLGY 307
MIDTERM EXAM
STUDY GUIDE
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Lecture Note:1
A Dinosaur is a reptile-like or bird-like animal with an upright posture that spent most
(perhaps all) of its life on land.
Dinosaurs ancestors were reptiles and birds are descended from dinosaurs.
Bipedal: Walking on two hind limbs.
Quadrupedal: Walking on all four limbs
Facultative bipedal: Walk part time on hind limbs
Faculative quadrupedal: Walk part time on all four limbs.
Dinosaurs are defined by their special ankles ( we call it the AM Ankle)
What is NOT a Dinosaur?
If it does not have an AM ankle then it is NOT a dinosaur.
A plyosaur lived at the same time as the dinosaur but lived exclusively in the oceans, not
on land, and lacked the AM ankle so it is NOT a dinosaur.
Pterosaur lived the same time as the dinosaur but lived on land, flew in the air, and
lacked lacked the AM ankle so NOT a dinosaur.
Dimetrodon usually put in toy collections because it is mislabeled as a dinosaur. A
Dimetrodon lived millions of years before the dinosaurs and lacked the AM ankle so it is
NOT a dinosaur..In fact, it is more related to us than a dinosaur
ROOT WORD-Saurus
Example: Lystrosaurus and Mesosaurus both lacked the AM ankle therefore they are
NOT dinosaurs.
Saurus simply translates as a reptile.
Crocodiles lived at the same time as the dinosaurs and survive today but lack the AM
ankle so NOT a dinosaur.
History of Dinosaur Studies
Robert Plot: Very first dinosaur bone described in 1676. Within Natural History of
Oxfordshire. Lower end of thigh (femur). This specimen is now LOST!!
Plot’s Hypothesis: Of then they are neither the bones of horse, oxen nor
elephants, as I am strongly persuaded they are not, upon comparison, and from
their likes found in churches, it remains that (notwithstanding their extravgent
magnitude) they must have been in the bones of men or women.”
Obviously, his hypothesis was INCORRECT but let’s look at WHY he
might have thought the bone was from a giant human.
Human and elephant skeletons look VASTLY different when they
are properly mounted...BUT the same ones laid out as they might
be found in the fossil record are more confusing. This is why there
are myths about races of human giants. The same mistakes were
made about dinosaur fossils.
Richard Brookes: (1763) He discovered the same specimen in publication. The first
dinosaur species “officially” named Scrotum Humanum.
William Buckland: Found bones in 1815 and first published the scientific descripption in
1824 (but did not give name).
This dinosaur is now called a Megalosaurus.
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Instructor of Charles Lyell, very famous geologist, who invented the term
palaeontology. (This is the British spelling with the extra ‘a’ after the first l then
influenced Darwin) Buckland was known as a weird guy.
The Mantells: Gideon and his wife Mary. Mary found the teeth (?).
Cuvier (a famous scientist they sent the teeth to) said it was from an ancient
Rhino BUT… it looked like Iguana teeth enlarged so the Iguanodon was named
in 1825.
Sir Richard Owen: (1842) Dinosauria
Own is the one who came up with the name Dinosauria which means terrible
reptile. They were not lizards but advanced mammal-like reptiles (quadrupeds)
so Reptiles today are degenerates of their Mesozoic ancestors.
Joseph Leidy (1868): In New Jersey, he finds a complete skeleton that looks like an
Iguanodon.
Hadrosaurus=heavy lizard.
Definitely bipedal and ‘modified’
Edward Drinker Cope (1840-1897): Phil Academy of Sciences. Over 1400 publications
(that is a lot of publications).
Cope Feuded with Othniel Charles Marsh
Othniel Charles Marsh (1831-1899): Yale: Peabody Museum
Great Dinosaur Rush in the West.
Both Cope and Marsh produced many fossils
Their feud was called the Dinosaur wars
Hitchcock’s Track: In the mid 1800s, eastern US Edward Hitchcock.
Hitchcock was the founder of Ichnology.
Ichnology is the study of fossil tracks
Hitchcock recognized coprolites (fossil poop)
The story goes that Noah’s Raven made them
Hitchcock thought that as Noah’s flood receded these giant birds walked along
the shoreline and made the tracks!!
Tendaguru expeditions: Occurred in Tanzania (1907-1912)
German paleontologists (many) removed over 225 tons of bone to Berlin
4-5 day hike from the site to the boats.
During these expeditions human labor was used.
These discoveries are still on display in Berlin
Roy Chapman Andrews: American Museum of Natural History
1920s Central Asiatic Expeditions
Protoceratops and eggs
He was the inspiration for “Indiana Jones” but was actually from Beloit WI!
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