Chapter

Dinosaur Taphonomy

Anthony R. Fiorillo and David A. Eberth

in The Dinosauria

Published by University of California Press

Published in print June 2004 | ISBN: 9780520242098
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520941434 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520242098.003.0028
Dinosaur Taphonomy

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Taphonomy is the study of all biotic and abiotic factors that influence the preservation of organismal remains after death. This chapter discusses dinosaur taphonomy, including its importance, historical trends, and future potential. It also examines taphonomic parameters and analytical methods and their applications to dinosaur fossils, sites, and formations. The chapter also groups examples of taphonomic studies of dinosaurs into three categories: 1) monotaxic-site studies (sites with single individuals or dominated by multiple individuals of one taxon); (2) multitaxic-site studies (sites consisting of two or more taxa and any number of individuals); and (3) comparative-site studies (comparisons of sites that are studied in the context of stratigraphy, sedimentology, and/or paleogeography). Taphonomic studies of dinosaur fossil sites provide important insights into paleobiology, paleoecology, stratigraphy, and geology of dinosaurs.

Keywords: taphonomy; fossils; monotaxic-site studies; multitaxic-site studies; comparative-site studies; stratigraphy; sedimentology; paleogeography

Chapter.  6040 words. 

Subjects: Evolutionary Biology

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