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Feathered Dinosaurs

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Feathered Dinosaurs

The Origin of Birds

John Long   Museum Victoria
Peter Schouten   Illustrator

Colour illustrations
208 pages, 255 x 225 mm
Publisher: CSIRO Publishing

    Hardback - 2008
ISBN: 9780643094345 - AU $ 49.95



New fossil evidence makes clear that not all dinosaurs suffered extinction 65 million years ago. It’s a revelation that has profoundly changed the way we perceive the natural world and has given us a new understanding about the origins of birds. We now believe that all living birds are descendants of certain predatory dinosaurs, the theropods. Indeed, many theropods are preserved with feathers as part of their skin. The transition from small, feathered dinosaur to primitive flying bird is now accepted as an anatomically seamless evolutionary event.

Feathered Dinosaurs dramatically brings to life all the known groups of dinosaurs that bore feathers. Through the eyes of one of the world’s most acclaimed natural history artists, Peter Schouten, their peculiar physical traits are matched with living creatures to develop a series of imaginative life paintings of this fascinating extinct group. Palaeontologist and popular science author John Long provides an easily readable text that explains each of the steps in going from dinosaur to bird, and how flight evolved.


  • Foreword by Dr Luis Chiappe, Chairman, Department of Vertebrate Palaeontology, Natural History Museum of Los Angeles
  • 80 spectacular double-page illustrations by one of Australia’s foremost natural history artists
  • Succinct summaries of the scientific knowledge and possible lifestyles of each dinosaur and fossil bird
  • Extensive bibliography with references including works published in 2007

  View a sample from Feathered Dinosaurs. 

 …a highly readable, beautifully illustrated book that is a must-have for anyone with an interest in evolution, palaeontology, the origins of birds, and, of course, dinosaurs. Long and Schouten deserve a round of applause for this carefully crafted, unique and fascinating book.
Anne Musser, Explore (Australian Museum Magazine), December 2009-February 2010

"This is a highly readable book by eminent palaeontologist John Long for anyone with a fascination with fossils, dinosaurs and the (controversial) origin of birds."
WINGSPAN, December 2008

"…a highly readable, beautifully illustrated book that is a must-have for bibliophiles. Peter Schouten, rightly credited as one of the authors, has produced a remarkable set of illustrated reconstructions that reflect a fine eye for anatomical details with a flair for composition. I highly recommend Feathered Dinosaurs to anyone interested in vertebrate history, the origins of birds, and in fact all things dinosaurian (the illustrations and short species accounts make this book accessible to even younger readers with an interest in dinosaurology)."
Anne Musser, Linnean Society of New South Wales Newsletter, No 132, July 2009

"I love the book. It makes a handy reference and the illustrations are superb, progressing from unquestionable 'dinosaurs' to clearly 'avian' forms."
Greg Czechura, WILDLIFE Australia Magazine, 2008


 Renowned palaeontologist John Long has collected fossils in Antarctica, Africa, throughout Asia and has worked extensively in North America, Europe and in every part of Australia. He has published over 200 scientific papers and general science articles, and has named almost 50 new species of prehistoric creatures through his work. John has authored or co-authored some 24 books, and in 2001 won the prestigious Eureka Prize for the Public Promotion of Science. He is currently Head of Sciences for Museum Victoria.

Acclaimed wildlife artist Peter Schouten delights in painting creatures that either cannot or have not been photographed, due to extinction or rarity. His award-winning books A Gap in Nature and Astonishing Animals provided startling images of some wonderful lost or rare animals. From an early age Peter was passionate about all things feathered, furred and scaled – from both present and past – which led to a budding career in palaeontology. He has spent the last two years working on the 80 magnificent illustrations for Feathered Dinosaurs.

Related Titles
A Remarkable Journey    When Life Nearly Died    Comparative Aspects of Reproductive Aging between the Mare and Woman    Bird Minds    Prehistoric Marine Life in Australia's Inland Sea    Taxonomy of Australian Mammals    Advances in Reintroduction Biology of Australian and New Zealand Fauna  


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