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The Dawn of Animal Life : A Biohistorical Study - Martin F. Glaessner

The Dawn of Animal Life

A Biohistorical Study

Paperback

Published: 19th August 1985
RRP $58.95
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This book examines the origin of the present diversity of marine invertebrate animals. A brief review of the early stages in the history of life discusses the time-scale of the relevant geological periods alongside corresponding events in the evolutionary sequence. These views of the early history of life are then matched against the fossil record and conjectures drawn from the living fauna, enabling the author to attempt for the first time an overview of the early diversification of marine animal life. Transitions to the succeeding assemblages of shellbearing fossils in Palaeozoic rocks are discussed and a number of stratigraphic adjustments are suggested for the period in which evolutionary events had their greatest impact on oceans and marine rock strata. The need for an interdisciplinary approach to early evolution is emphasized.

List of figures and tables
Preface
Precambrian life and its environment: a review: I Theories about the origin of life and its environment
The Precambrian, its subdivisions, and the dating of biohistoric events
The preservation and recognition of organic remains in rocks: chemofossils, fossil organisms, pseudofossils
The cell: organization and life processes. The 'kingdoms' of organisms
Proterozoic fossils and environments
Origins and early differentiation of the Metazoa
The Ediacarian faunal assemblages: discovery, composition, significance
Discoveries at Ediacara
Palaeoenvironment and fossilization
Composition of the fauna
Paleobiology
Other occurrences of Late Precambrian Metazoa in Australia
The Nama fauna of southwestern Africa (Namibia) and possible equivalents in South America
Late Precambrian Metazoa from the Northern Hemisphere
The concept of Ediacarian fauna
The Precambrian diversification of the Metazoa in the light of paleozoology: I The significance of the Ediacarian fauna for metazoan phylogeny
Re-assessment of the incompleteness of the palaeontological record
The record of the Late Precambrian fauna applied to problems of phylogeny
Occupation of the marine environment: habitats and habits
Conclusions on the physical environments of the Late Precambrian Metazoa
The taxonomy of emerging diversity: the meaning of phyla
Rates of evolution
The Precambrian-Cambrian transition: I Stratigraphic scales: boundaries and historical transitions
The fate of the Ediacarian faunas: extinction, survival, replacement
The Cambrian Period as the time of the first shelly fossils
the oldest Cambrian faunas and their evolutionary antecedents
Agglutinated, chitinous and mineralized body components in Ediacarian fossils and in some successors
Extrinsic and internal factors of biomineralisation and its functional significance
Environmental changes at the Precambrian-Cambrian transition
Increase in diversity of trace fossils
Consequences and causes of evolutionary diversification
Emerging animal life: thoughts on interactions of lithosphere, hydrosphere, atmosphere and biosphere
Interactions of intrinsic and environmental factors in the emergent biosphere
Metazoan expansion in the marine biosphere: a three-stage process
Interactions in the light of plate tectonics
Animal life: past, present and future
Appendix
References
Dictionaries of scientific terms
Author index
Subject index
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780521312165
ISBN-10: 0521312167
Series: Cambridge Earth Science Series
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 258
Published: 19th August 1985
Publisher: CAMBRIDGE UNIV PR
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 22.86 x 15.24  x 1.47
Weight (kg): 0.38