There are four main groups of reptiles, known as Crocodilians, Squamates, Tuataras, and Turtles. Crocodilians consists of large reptiles which includes alligators, crocodiles, gharials, and caimans. Squamates are lizards, snakes, and worm-lizards. A worm-lizard is a subterranean burrowing reptile that resembles an earthworm, a legless lizard. Tuataras are a group of reptiles that are lizard-like in appearance but are different from squamates because their skull isn’t jointed. Turtles are the most ancient reptiles alive today. They have changed very little since they first showed up 220 million years ago. The first turtle appeared 220 million years ago.(Laura Klappenbach)
About 20 million years after Pappochelys, we began to see a more similar looking ancestor to the turtle, the Odontochelys semitestacea. O.semitestacea was roaming the planet in the Late Triassic era in modern day China. Odontochelys differed a lot from modern turtles. Modern day turtles possess a horned like beak without any teeth present in their mouth, while Odontochelys fossils showed that teeth were found embedded in their upper and lower jaws. One of the most interesting features of turtles, both modern and prehistoric, are their shells that formed an armored protective casing over its body. Odontochelys only possessed the plastron (the bottom portion of a turtle's armor) and it had yet to develop a solid carapace. Instead of a carapace,
It is thought that the increased complexity in vertebrate neuroanatomy may stem from interactions between neural crest cells and other cell types. An example of this is the essential role of neural crest cells in the expansion of the head and formation of a ‘true neck’. Neural crest cells are thought to be crucial in multiple stages of cranial mesoderm development and secrete signals which depress myogenesis, consequently allowing the formation of cranial myofibres. Research has suggested that these distinct myogenic regulatory sub-networks arose in early vertebrates. The formation of a ‘true neck’ is a result of the pectoral girdle losing its attachment to the skull, and allowed tetrapods to colonise land as they could now move their head independent of limbs. Despite
Turtles have puzzled evolutionary biologist immensely. Their morphology isn’t similar to any other living species, specifically their shell is quite perplexing as the shell makeup is unique to other armored tetrapods, like rhinos and armadillos. In fact, the dorsal part of the shell is transformed into ribs and vertebrae and their shoulder blades have inside-out topology against the rip cage. This is unique in comparison to other armored tetrapods because they tend to have independent vertebrae and rib cage to their armor and have regular topology of the shoulder blades. In addition, turtles lack a temporal fenestra which classes them in the anapsid group. This is abnormal, because generally turtles are labeled as reptiles and generally reptiles have two fenestra which classes them into the diapsid group. These characteristics are part of the reason as to why a phylogenetic tree is complicated to create. This primary paper ultimately sets out to determine where the turtle, specifically the extant species the green sea turtle and the Chinese
The Tyrannosaurus rex was one of the most powerful and prevailing dinosaurs to ever exist. These large carnivores lived during the late Cretaceous Period, which was about 66 million years ago. They roamed the lands of which is now present day western North America. Its name comes from the Greek and Latin origins, the word ‘tyrannosaurus’ meaning ‘tyrant lizard’ in Greek, and ‘rex’ meaning ‘king’ in Latin. The infamous T-Rex had a very unique body structure. A massive 5-foot long skull, tiny 3-foot long arms, and an elongated tail to balance the whole body out were not common features among ferocious predators.
The evolution of how snakes reproduce by bearing live offspring will be discussed by determining, the evolutionary pathway of live birth, viviparity, egg laying birth, oviparity and giving live birth but being kept in the womb in eggs until being ready to hatch, ovoviviparity. Discussion of the advantages and disadvantages of each reproduction method will be determined. The objective of this paper is to discuss the factors that have contributed to the evolution of snakes being viviparous.
Billy's Tarpon Turtle serves Carribean-American fare with a focus on seafood recipes. Guests can stop in for lunch and dinner and enjoy the indoor, mission-style seating, or take their meals out on the waterside deck that overlooks Tarpon lake. The restaurant includes a dock with 16 slips for those who want to come via the lake. There's also an indoor/outdoor bar.
Certain types of large snakes, in particular boas and pythons, and cetaceans, whales and dolphins, are shown to have homologous hip bones, a pelvis and femur. These bones have previously been considered vestigial--organ or body part which became redundant through the course of evolution--, but upon further research, have shown to serve a purpose.
You may have heard that some elephants are going extinct, but did you know that Hawksbill Turtles are critically endangered? Many people are informed about the more popular species that are going extinct, but what about the ones who actually help us indirectly? The Hawksbill Turtles are becoming extinct like many sea turtles for many reasons like, people will accidentally get their net caught in the mouth or the body of a Hawksbill Turtle, people all around the world may also eat their eggs and sell the stunning shell of a full grown turtle. Hawksbill turtles are essential to sustain wildlife all around the world.
The Synapsid clade (classification construct), are known as the second lineage of terrestrial vertebrates (amniote tetrapods), that originated at the end of the Paleozoic era (Pough, Janis, and Heiser 448). According to Pough, Janis, and Heiser, “Synapsids include mammals and their extinct pre-decessors, commonly called “mammal-like reptiles”, (can also be referred to as “non-mammalian”)”. The key distinction in distinguishing synapsids from other amniotes is their synapsid skull; the synapsid skull is a skull with the presence of a lower temporal (synapsid) fenestra, plus a few other skull features (Fig. 1) (Pough, Janis, and Heiser 448).
Dr. Cox’s main focus is on the forces that initiate the evolutionary pattern of color polymorphism and mimetic coloration using coral snake mimicry as a useful model to study convergent evolution. Coral snake mimicry can be used to show how selection and other evolutionary processes drive powerful phenotypes among populations. Cox’s research revolves around the opposition of previous objections to coral snake mimicry to show that several harmless, nonvenomous snakes are mimics of highly venomous snakes. This led to the arise of new questions as to what are the evolutionary forces driving color pattern and how geography shapes genetic and biological diversity within and among species.
Have you ever seen or heard of sea turtles? There are 7 different species of sea turtles that we know of today. Today I will be discussing the species known as leatherback sea turtles. I will be discussing the different characteristics that make leatherback sea turtles animals. The characteristics of life are cells, levels of cellular organization, use energy, responding to their environment, growing, reproduction, and adapting to their environment.
Written largely for the graduate student of paleontology, The Origin of Higher Taxa by Tom Kemp (emeritus university lecturer in palaeontology at the University of Oxford, and specialist on therapsids [also known as mammal-like reptiles] and mammal origins), explores the problem of higher taxa, and the mechanism, his theory of correlated progression, by which they evolve. The book consists of nine chapters, roughly broken up into: introduction to the subject and the nature of higher taxa and organisms, the paleontological (evolutionary change) and developmental evidence, and the fossil record and synthesis.
Matrotrophy is the alternative reproductive method to laying shelled eggs in reptiles. With this maternal strategy, females can supply their unborn offspring nutrients from their own bodies via a placenta for their entire gestation period rather than relying on egg nutrient stores and external incubation (Itonaga et al. 2012). Squamates are known to contain several species that give birth to live young, contrary to the usual shelled-egg method of most other reptilian taxa such as the Crocodilians and Tuataras. Matrotrophy in Squamates likely has many origins and probably did not evolve as a result of one environmental element alone (Albergotti and Guillette 2011). The amount of maternal provisioning is vastly different between viviparous and