Chapter

Adaptations to Life on Land

Michel Laurin

in How Vertebrates Left the Water

Published by University of California Press

Published in print February 2010 | ISBN: 9780520266476
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520947986 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520266476.003.0006
Adaptations to Life on Land

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This chapter discusses the main adaptations and exaptations (preadaptations) for terrestrial life in stegocephalians, first examining the evolution of the locomotor system (limb and girdle). It then discusses the main adaptations of the aquatic ancestors to life on emerged land, lung evolution, loss of the internal gills, and skin breathing. The chapter also examines aspects of water-balance evolution in early stegocephalians and amniotes, and finally discusses the evolution of sensory organs in stegocephalians.

Keywords: adaptations; exaptations; locomotor system; limb; girdle; lung evolution; skin breathing; amniotes; sensory organs; stegocephalians

Chapter.  6481 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Evolutionary Biology

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