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A Comprehensive Phylogenetic Study of amiid Fishes (Amiidae) Based on Comparative Skeletal Anatomy
An Empirical Search for Interconnected Patterns of Natural History

    By Lance Grande and William E. Bemis

    This book is one of the most thoroughly documented original studies of comparative osteology to date. It is a comprehensive, in-depth phylogenetic study of fossil and living halecomorph fishes, focusing on Amiidae and the skeletal system. Halecomorph fishes are one of the most basal of neopterygian fish groups, and generally thought to be the sister group of teleosts. Many species are presented in great detail, starting with a thorough redescription of the skeleton of living Amia calva, and including beautifully preserved fossil halecomorph species from the last 220 million years.

    Numerous methodological, philosophical and theoretical concepts are discussed, from the standpoint of an original phylogenetic study using a multidisciplinary approach. These concepts include specimen preparation, construction of taxonomic diagnoses, individual and ontogenetic variation in morphology, bone development, treatment of undiagnosable taxa, combining data from fossil and living taxa, problematic taxa, problematic characters, interpreting ontogeny from the fossil record, historical biogeography, paleoecology, and cladistic pattern congruence.

    The book is clothbound and has 700 85_8" x 11" pages with over 1,300 figures arranged in 436 plates (including 20 color plates). The figures are mostly high resolution halftones as combination figures with detailed original line drawings that should prove useful to anyone interested in actinopterygian skeletal systems and their evolutionary history and development. The cost is $75 plus postage and handling.

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