The giraffe is a genus of African even-toed ungulate mammals, the tallest living terrestrial animals and the largest ruminants. Taxonomic classifications of one to eight extant giraffe species have been described, based upon research into the mitochondrial and nuclear DNA, as well as morphological measurements of Giraffa, but the International Union for Conservation of Nature recognises only one species, Giraffa camelopardalis, the type species, with nine subspecies. Seven other species are extinct, prehistoric species known from fossils; the giraffe's chief distinguishing characteristics are its long neck and legs, its horn-like ossicones, its distinctive coat patterns. It is classified under the okapi, its scattered range extends from Chad in the north to South Africa in the south, from Niger in the west to Somalia in the east. Giraffes inhabit savannahs and woodlands, their food source is leaves and flowers of woody plants acacia species, which they browse at heights most other herbivores cannot reach.
They may be preyed on by lions, spotted hyenas and African wild dogs. Giraffes live in herds of related females and their offspring, or bachelor herds of unrelated adult males, but are gregarious and may gather in large aggregations. Males establish social hierarchies through "necking", which are combat bouts where the neck is used as a weapon. Dominant males gain mating access to females, which bear the sole responsibility for raising the young; the giraffe has intrigued various cultures, both ancient and modern, for its peculiar appearance, has been featured in paintings and cartoons. It is classified by the International Union for Conservation of Nature as Vulnerable to extinction, has been extirpated from many parts of its former range. Giraffes are still found in numerous national parks and game reserves but estimations as of 2016 indicate that there are 97,500 members of Giraffa in the wild. More than 1,600 were kept in zoos in 2010; the name "giraffe" has its earliest known origins in the Arabic word zarāfah borrowed from the animal's Somali name geri.
The Arab name is translated as "fast-walker". There were several Middle English spellings, such as jarraf and gerfauntz; the Italian form giraffa arose in the 1590s. The modern English form developed around 1600 from the French girafe. "Camelopard" is an archaic English name for the giraffe deriving from the Ancient Greek for camel and leopard, referring to its camel-like shape and its leopard-like colouring. Living giraffes were classified as one species by Carl Linnaeus in 1758, he gave it the binomial name. Morten Thrane Brünnich classified the genus Giraffa in 1772; the species name camelopardalis is from Latin. The giraffe is one of only two living genera of the family Giraffidae in the order Artiodactyla, the other being the okapi; the family was once much more extensive, with over 10 fossil genera described. Their closest known relatives are the extinct deer-like climacocerids. They, together with the family Antilocapridae, belong to the superfamily Giraffoidea; these animals may have evolved from the extinct family Palaeomerycidae which might have been the ancestor of deer.
The elongation of the neck appears to have started early in the giraffe lineage. Comparisons between giraffes and their ancient relatives suggest that vertebrae close to the skull lengthened earlier, followed by lengthening of vertebrae further down. One early giraffid ancestor was Canthumeryx, dated variously to have lived 25–20 million years ago, 17–15 mya or 18–14.3 mya and whose deposits have been found in Libya. This animal was medium-sized and antelope-like. Giraffokeryx appeared 15 mya in the Indian subcontinent and resembled an okapi or a small giraffe, had a longer neck and similar ossicones. Giraffokeryx may have shared a clade with more massively built giraffids like Sivatherium and Bramatherium. Giraffids like Palaeotragus and Samotherium appeared 14 mya and lived throughout Africa and Eurasia; these animals were longer with broader skulls. Paleotragus may have been its ancestor. Others find. Samotherium was a important transitional fossil in the giraffe lineage as its cervical vertebrae was intermediate in length and structure between a modern giraffe and an okapi, was more vertical than the okapi's.
Bohlinia, which first appeared in southeastern Europe and lived 9–7 mya was a direct ancestor of the giraffe. Bohlinia resembled modern giraffes, having a long neck and legs and similar ossicones and dentition. Bohlinia entered China and northern India in response to climate change. From there, the genus Giraffa evolved and, around 7 mya, entered Africa. Further climate changes caused the extinction of the Asian giraffes, while the African giraffes survived and radiated into several new species. Living giraffes appear to have arisen around 1 mya in eastern Africa during the Pleistocene; some biologists suggest. G. jumae was larger and more built while G. gracilis was smaller and more built. The main driver for the evolution of the giraffes is believed to have been the changes from extensive forests to more open habitats, which began 8 mya. During this time, tropical plants disappeared and were replaced by arid C4 plants, a dry savannah emerged across eastern and northern Africa and western India.
Some researchers have hypothesised that this new ha
Odd-toed ungulates, mammals which constitute the taxonomic order Perissodactyla, are hoofed animals—ungulates—which bear most of their weight on one of the five toes: the third toe. The non-weight-bearing toes are either present, vestigial, or positioned posteriorly. By contrast, the even-toed ungulates bear most of their weight on two of the five toes: their third and fourth toes. Another difference between the two is that odd-toed ungulates digest plant cellulose in their intestines rather than in one or more stomach chambers as the even-toed ungulates do; the order includes about 17 species divided into three families: Equidae and Tapiridae. Despite their different appearances, they were recognized as related families in the 19th century by the zoologist Richard Owen, who coined the order name; the largest odd-toed ungulates are rhinoceroses, the extinct Paraceratherium, a hornless rhino from the Oligocene, is considered one of the largest land mammals of all time. At the other extreme, an early member of the order, the prehistoric horse Hyracotherium, had a withers height of only 30 to 60 cm.
Apart from dwarf varieties of the domestic horse and donkey, perissodactyls reach a body length of 180–420 cm and a weight of 150 to 4,500 kg. While rhinos have only sparse hair and exhibit a thick epidermis and horses have dense, short coats. Most species are brown, although zebras and young tapirs are striped; the main axes of both the front and rear feet pass through the third toe, always the largest. The remaining toes have been reduced in size to varying degrees. Tapirs, which are adapted to walking on soft ground, have four toes on their fore feet and three on their hind feet. Living rhinos have three toes on both the hind feet. Modern equines possess only a single toe. Rhinos and tapirs, by contrast, have hooves covering only the leading edge of the toes, with the bottom being soft; the ulnae and fibulae are reduced in horses. A common feature that distinguishes this group from other mammals is the saddle-shaped ankle between the astragalus and the scaphoid, which restricts the mobility of the foot.
The thigh is short, the clavicle is absent. Odd-toed ungulates have a long upper jaw with an extended diastema between the front and cheek teeth, giving them an elongated head; the various forms of snout between families are due to differences in the form of the premaxilla. The lacrimal bone has projecting cusps in a wide contact with the nasal bone; the temporomandibular joint is high and the mandible is enlarged. Rhinos have one or two horns made of agglutinated keratin, unlike the horns of even-toed ungulates, which have a bony core; the number and form of the teeth vary according to diet. The incisors and canines can be small or absent, as in the two African species of rhinoceros. In the horses only the males possess canines; the surface shape and height of the molars is dependent on whether soft leaves or hard grass makes up the main component of their diets. Three or four cheek teeth are present on each jaw half, so the dental formula of odd-toed ungulates is: 0-3. 0-1. 2-4. 31-3. 1. 2-4. 3 × 2 = 30-44 All perissodactyls are hindgut fermenters.
In contrast to ruminants, hindgut fermenters store digested food that has left the stomach in an enlarged cecum, where the food is digested by bacteria. No gallbladder is present; the stomach of perissodactyls is built, while the cecum accommodates up to 90 l in horses. The intestine is long, reaching up to 26 m in horses. Extraction of nutrients from food is inefficient, which explains why no odd-toed ungulates are small; the present distribution of most perissodactyl species is only a small fraction of their original range. Members of this group are now found only in Central and South America and southern Africa, central and southeastern Asia. During the peak of odd-toed ungulate existence, from the Eocene to the Oligocene, perissodactyls were distributed over much of the globe, the only exceptions being Australia and Antarctica. Horses and tapirs arrived in South America after the formation of the Isthmus of Panama in the Pliocene, around 3 million years ago. In North America, they died out around 10,000 years ago, while in Europe, the tarpans disappeared in the 19th century.
Hunting and habitat restriction have reduced the present-day species to fragmented relict populations. In contrast, domesticated horses and donkeys have gained a worldwide distribution, feral animals of both species are now found in regions outside of their original range, such as in Australia. Perissodactyls inhabit a number of different habitats. Tapirs are solitary and inhabit tropical rainforests. Rhinos tend to live alone in rather dry savannas, in Asia, wet marsh or forest areas. Horses inhabit open areas such as grasslands, steppes, or semi-deserts, live together in groups. Odd-toed ungulates are herbivores that feed, to varying degrees, on grasses and other plant parts. A distinction is made between grass feeders and leaf feeders. Odd-toed ungulates are characterized by a long gestation period and a small litter size delivering a single young; the g
The Silurian is a geologic period and system spanning 24.6 million years from the end of the Ordovician Period, at 443.8 million years ago, to the beginning of the Devonian Period, 419.2 Mya. The Silurian is the shortest period of the Paleozoic Era; as with other geologic periods, the rock beds that define the period's start and end are well identified, but the exact dates are uncertain by several million years. The base of the Silurian is set at a series of major Ordovician–Silurian extinction events when 60% of marine species were wiped out. A significant evolutionary milestone during the Silurian was the diversification of jawed fish and bony fish. Multi-cellular life began to appear on land in the form of small, bryophyte-like and vascular plants that grew beside lakes and coastlines, terrestrial arthropods are first found on land during the Silurian. However, terrestrial life would not diversify and affect the landscape until the Devonian; the Silurian system was first identified by British geologist Roderick Murchison, examining fossil-bearing sedimentary rock strata in south Wales in the early 1830s.
He named the sequences for a Celtic tribe of Wales, the Silures, inspired by his friend Adam Sedgwick, who had named the period of his study the Cambrian, from the Latin name for Wales. This naming does not indicate any correlation between the occurrence of the Silurian rocks and the land inhabited by the Silures. In 1835 the two men presented a joint paper, under the title On the Silurian and Cambrian Systems, Exhibiting the Order in which the Older Sedimentary Strata Succeed each other in England and Wales, the germ of the modern geological time scale; as it was first identified, the "Silurian" series when traced farther afield came to overlap Sedgwick's "Cambrian" sequence, provoking furious disagreements that ended the friendship. Charles Lapworth resolved the conflict by defining a new Ordovician system including the contested beds. An early alternative name for the Silurian was "Gotlandian" after the strata of the Baltic island of Gotland; the French geologist Joachim Barrande, building on Murchison's work, used the term Silurian in a more comprehensive sense than was justified by subsequent knowledge.
He divided the Silurian rocks of Bohemia into eight stages. His interpretation was questioned in 1854 by Edward Forbes, the stages of Barrande, F, G and H, have since been shown to be Devonian. Despite these modifications in the original groupings of the strata, it is recognized that Barrande established Bohemia as a classic ground for the study of the earliest fossils; the Llandovery Epoch lasted from 443.8 ± 1.5 to 433.4 ± 2.8 mya, is subdivided into three stages: the Rhuddanian, lasting until 440.8 million years ago, the Aeronian, lasting to 438.5 million years ago, the Telychian. The epoch is named for the town of Llandovery in Wales; the Wenlock, which lasted from 433.4 ± 1.5 to 427.4 ± 2.8 mya, is subdivided into the Sheinwoodian and Homerian ages. It is named after Wenlock Edge in England. During the Wenlock, the oldest-known tracheophytes of the genus Cooksonia, appear; the complexity of later Gondwana plants like Baragwanathia, which resembled a modern clubmoss, indicates a much longer history for vascular plants, extending into the early Silurian or Ordovician.
The first terrestrial animals appear in the Wenlock, represented by air-breathing millipedes from Scotland. The Ludlow, lasting from 427.4 ± 1.5 to 423 ± 2.8 mya, comprises the Gorstian stage, lasting until 425.6 million years ago, the Ludfordian stage. It is named for the town of Ludlow in England; the Přídolí, lasting from 423 ± 1.5 to 419.2 ± 2.8 mya, is the final and shortest epoch of the Silurian. It is named after one locality at the Homolka a Přídolí nature reserve near the Prague suburb Slivenec in the Czech Republic. Přídolí is the old name of a cadastral field area. In North America a different suite of regional stages is sometimes used: Cayugan Lockportian Tonawandan Ontarian Alexandrian In Estonia the following suite of regional stages is used: Ohessaare stage Kaugatuma stage Kuressaare stage Paadla stage Rootsiküla stage Jaagarahu stage Jaani stage Adavere stage Raikküla stage Juuru stage With the supercontinent Gondwana covering the equator and much of the southern hemisphere, a large ocean occupied most of the northern half of the globe.
The high sea levels of the Silurian and the flat land resulted in a number of island chains, thus a rich diversity of environmental settings. During the Silurian, Gondwana continued a slow southward drift to high southern latitudes, but there is evidence that the Silurian icecaps were less extensive than those of the late-Ordovician glaciation; the southern continents remained united during this period. The melting of icecaps and glaciers contributed to a rise in sea level, recognizable from the fact that Silurian sediments overlie eroded Ordovician sediments, forming an unconformity; the continents of Avalonia and Laurentia drifted together near the equator, starting the formation of a second supercontinent known as Euramerica. When the proto-Europe coll
Pangolins or scaly anteaters are mammals of the order Pholidota. The one extant family, has three genera: Manis, which comprises four species living in Asia; these species range in size from 30 to 100 cm. A number of extinct pangolin species are known. Pangolins have protective keratin scales covering their skin, they live depending on the species. Pangolins are nocturnal, their diet consists of ants and termites, which they capture using their long tongues, they tend to be solitary animals, meeting only to mate and produce a litter of one to three offspring, which are raised for about two years. Pangolins are threatened by poaching and heavy deforestation of their natural habitats, are the most trafficked mammals in the world. Of the eight species of pangolin, four are listed as vulnerable, two are listed as endangered, two are listed as critically endangered on the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List of Threatened Species; the name pangolin comes from the Malay word pengguling, meaning "one who rolls up".
However, the modern name in Standard Malay is tenggiling. The etymologies of the three generic names Manis and Smutsia are sometimes misunderstood. Carl Linnaeus invented the Neo-Latin generic name Manis as a feminine singular form of the Latin masculine plural Manes, the Ancient Roman name for a type of spirit, after the animal's strange appearance. Constantine Rafinesque formed the Neo-Latin generic name Phataginus from the French term phatagin, adopted by Count Buffon after the reported local name phatagin or phatagen used in the East Indies; the British naturalist John Edward Gray named Smutsia for the South African naturalist Johannes Smuts, the first South African to do a treatise on mammals in 1832. The physical appearance of a pangolin is marked by large hardened overlapping plate-like scales, which are soft on newborn pangolins, but harden as the animal matures, they are made of keratin, the same material from which human fingernails and tetrapod claws are made, are structurally and compositionally different from the scales of reptiles.
The pangolin's scaled body is comparable in appearance to a pine cone. It can curl up into a ball when threatened, with its overlapping scales acting as armor, while it protects its face by tucking it under its tail; the scales are sharp. Pangolins can emit a noxious-smelling chemical from glands near the anus, similar to the spray of a skunk, they have short legs, with sharp claws which they use for burrowing into ant and termite mounds, climbing. The tongues of pangolins are long and – like those of the giant anteater and the tube-lipped nectar bat – the root of the tongue is not attached to the hyoid bone, but is in the thorax between the sternum and the trachea. Large pangolins can extend their tongues as much as 40 cm, with a diameter of only 0.5 cm. Most pangolins are nocturnal animals; the long-tailed pangolin is active by day, while other species of pangolins spend most of the daytime sleeping, curled up into a ball. They are considered to be secretive creatures. Arboreal pangolins live in hollow trees, whereas the ground-dwelling species dig tunnels underground, to a depth of 3.5 m.
Some pangolins walk with their front claws bent under the foot pad, although they use the entire foot pad on their rear limbs. Furthermore, some may walk a few steps bipedally. Pangolins are good swimmers. Pangolins are insectivorous. Most of their diet consists of various species of ants and termites and may be supplemented by other insects larvae, they are somewhat particular and tend to consume only one or two species of insects when many species are available to them. A pangolin can consume 140 to 200 g of insects per day. Pangolins are an important regulator of termite populations in their natural habitats. Pangolins have a poor sense of vision, so they rely on smell and hearing. Pangolins lack teeth, therefore they have evolved other physical characteristics to help them eat ants and termites, their skeletal structure is sturdy and they have strong front legs that are useful for tearing into termite mounds. They use their powerful front claws to dig into trees and vegetation to find prey proceed to use their long tongues to probe inside the insect tunnels and to retrieve their prey.
The structure of their tongue and stomach is key to aiding pangolins in obtaining and digesting insects. Their saliva is sticky, causing ants and termites to stick to their long tongues when they are hunting through insect tunnels. Without teeth, pangolins lack the ability to chew; this part of their stomach is called the gizzard, it is covered in keratinous spines. These spines further aid in digestion of the pangolin's prey; some species, such as the tree pangolin, use their strong, prehensile tails to hang from tree branches and
The Jurassic period was a geologic period and system that spanned 56 million years from the end of the Triassic Period 201.3 million years ago to the beginning of the Cretaceous Period 145 Mya. The Jurassic constitutes the middle period of the Mesozoic Era known as the Age of Reptiles; the start of the period was marked by the major Triassic–Jurassic extinction event. Two other extinction events occurred during the period: the Pliensbachian-Toarcian extinction in the Early Jurassic, the Tithonian event at the end; the Jurassic period is divided into three epochs: Early and Late. In stratigraphy, the Jurassic is divided into the Lower Jurassic, Middle Jurassic, Upper Jurassic series of rock formations; the Jurassic is named after the Jura Mountains within the European Alps, where limestone strata from the period were first identified. By the beginning of the Jurassic, the supercontinent Pangaea had begun rifting into two landmasses: Laurasia to the north, Gondwana to the south; this created more coastlines and shifted the continental climate from dry to humid, many of the arid deserts of the Triassic were replaced by lush rainforests.
On land, the fauna transitioned from the Triassic fauna, dominated by both dinosauromorph and crocodylomorph archosaurs, to one dominated by dinosaurs alone. The first birds appeared during the Jurassic, having evolved from a branch of theropod dinosaurs. Other major events include the appearance of the earliest lizards, the evolution of therian mammals, including primitive placentals. Crocodilians made the transition from a terrestrial to an aquatic mode of life; the oceans were inhabited by marine reptiles such as ichthyosaurs and plesiosaurs, while pterosaurs were the dominant flying vertebrates. The chronostratigraphic term "Jurassic" is directly linked to the Jura Mountains, a mountain range following the course of the France–Switzerland border. During a tour of the region in 1795, Alexander von Humboldt recognized the limestone dominated mountain range of the Jura Mountains as a separate formation that had not been included in the established stratigraphic system defined by Abraham Gottlob Werner, he named it "Jura-Kalkstein" in 1799.
The name "Jura" is derived from the Celtic root *jor via Gaulish *iuris "wooded mountain", borrowed into Latin as a place name, evolved into Juria and Jura. The Jurassic period is divided into three epochs: Early and Late. In stratigraphy, the Jurassic is divided into the Lower Jurassic, Middle Jurassic, Upper Jurassic series of rock formations known as Lias and Malm in Europe; the separation of the term Jurassic into three sections originated with Leopold von Buch. The faunal stages from youngest to oldest are: During the early Jurassic period, the supercontinent Pangaea broke up into the northern supercontinent Laurasia and the southern supercontinent Gondwana; the Jurassic North Atlantic Ocean was narrow, while the South Atlantic did not open until the following Cretaceous period, when Gondwana itself rifted apart. The Tethys Sea closed, the Neotethys basin appeared. Climates were warm, with no evidence of a glacier having appeared; as in the Triassic, there was no land over either pole, no extensive ice caps existed.
The Jurassic geological record is good in western Europe, where extensive marine sequences indicate a time when much of that future landmass was submerged under shallow tropical seas. In contrast, the North American Jurassic record is the poorest of the Mesozoic, with few outcrops at the surface. Though the epicontinental Sundance Sea left marine deposits in parts of the northern plains of the United States and Canada during the late Jurassic, most exposed sediments from this period are continental, such as the alluvial deposits of the Morrison Formation; the Jurassic was a time of calcite sea geochemistry in which low-magnesium calcite was the primary inorganic marine precipitate of calcium carbonate. Carbonate hardgrounds were thus common, along with calcitic ooids, calcitic cements, invertebrate faunas with dominantly calcitic skeletons; the first of several massive batholiths were emplaced in the northern American cordillera beginning in the mid-Jurassic, marking the Nevadan orogeny. Important Jurassic exposures are found in Russia, South America, Japan and the United Kingdom.
In Africa, Early Jurassic strata are distributed in a similar fashion to Late Triassic beds, with more common outcrops in the south and less common fossil beds which are predominated by tracks to the north. As the Jurassic proceeded and more iconic groups of dinosaurs like sauropods and ornithopods proliferated in Africa. Middle Jurassic strata are neither well studied in Africa. Late Jurassic strata are poorly represented apart from the spectacular Tendaguru fauna in Tanzania; the Late Jurassic life of Tendaguru is similar to that found in western North America's Morrison Formation. During the Jurassic period, the primary vertebrates living in the sea were marine reptiles; the latter include ichthyosaurs, which were at the peak of their diversity, plesiosaurs and marine crocodiles of the families Teleosauridae and Metriorhynchidae. Numerous turtles could be found in rivers. In the invertebrate world, several new groups appeared, including rudists (a reef-formi
The Triassic is a geologic period and system which spans 50.6 million years from the end of the Permian Period 251.9 million years ago, to the beginning of the Jurassic Period 201.3 Mya. The Triassic is the shortest period of the Mesozoic Era. Both the start and end of the period are marked by major extinction events. Triassic began in the wake of the Permian–Triassic extinction event, which left the Earth's biosphere impoverished. Therapsids and archosaurs were the chief terrestrial vertebrates during this time. A specialized subgroup of archosaurs, called dinosaurs, first appeared in the Late Triassic but did not become dominant until the succeeding Jurassic Period; the first true mammals, themselves a specialized subgroup of therapsids evolved during this period, as well as the first flying vertebrates, the pterosaurs, like the dinosaurs, were a specialized subgroup of archosaurs. The vast supercontinent of Pangaea existed until the mid-Triassic, after which it began to rift into two separate landmasses, Laurasia to the north and Gondwana to the south.
The global climate during the Triassic was hot and dry, with deserts spanning much of Pangaea's interior. However, the climate became more humid as Pangaea began to drift apart; the end of the period was marked by yet another major mass extinction, the Triassic–Jurassic extinction event, that wiped out many groups and allowed dinosaurs to assume dominance in the Jurassic. The Triassic was named in 1834 by Friedrich von Alberti, after the three distinct rock layers that are found throughout Germany and northwestern Europe—red beds, capped by marine limestone, followed by a series of terrestrial mud- and sandstones—called the "Trias"; the Triassic is separated into Early and Late Triassic Epochs, the corresponding rocks are referred to as Lower, Middle, or Upper Triassic. The faunal stages from the youngest to oldest are: During the Triassic all the Earth's land mass was concentrated into a single supercontinent centered more or less on the equator and spanning from pole to pole, called Pangaea.
From the east, along the equator, the Tethys sea penetrated Pangaea, causing the Paleo-Tethys Ocean to be closed. In the mid-Triassic a similar sea penetrated along the equator from the west; the remaining shores were surrounded by the world-ocean known as Panthalassa. All the deep-ocean sediments laid down during the Triassic have disappeared through subduction of oceanic plates; the supercontinent Pangaea was rifting during the Triassic—especially late in that period—but had not yet separated. The first nonmarine sediments in the rift that marks the initial break-up of Pangaea, which separated New Jersey from Morocco, are of Late Triassic age. S. these thick sediments comprise the Newark Group. Because a super-continental mass has less shoreline compared to one broken up, Triassic marine deposits are globally rare, despite their prominence in Western Europe, where the Triassic was first studied. In North America, for example, marine deposits are limited to a few exposures in the west, thus Triassic stratigraphy is based on organisms that lived in lagoons and hypersaline environments, such as Estheria crustaceans.
At the beginning of the Mesozoic Era, Africa was joined with Earth's other continents in Pangaea. Africa shared the supercontinent's uniform fauna, dominated by theropods and primitive ornithischians by the close of the Triassic period. Late Triassic fossils are more common in the south than north; the time boundary separating the Permian and Triassic marks the advent of an extinction event with global impact, although African strata from this time period have not been studied. During the Triassic peneplains are thought to have formed in what is now southern Sweden. Remnants of this peneplain can be traced as a tilted summit accordance in the Swedish West Coast. In northern Norway Triassic peneplains may have been buried in sediments to be re-exposed as coastal plains called strandflats. Dating of illite clay from a strandflat of Bømlo, southern Norway, have shown that landscape there became weathered in Late Triassic times with the landscape also being shaped during that time. At Paleorrota geopark, located in Rio Grande do Sul, the Santa Maria Formation and Caturrita Formations are exposed.
In these formations, one of the earliest dinosaurs, Staurikosaurus, as well as the mammal ancestors Brasilitherium and Brasilodon have been discovered. The Triassic continental interior climate was hot and dry, so that typical deposits are red bed sandstones and evaporites. There is no evidence of glaciation near either pole. Pangaea's large size limited the moderating effect of the global ocean; the strong contrast between the Pangea supercontinent and the global ocean triggered intense cross-equatorial monsoons. The Triassic may have been a dry period, but evidence exists that it was punctuated by several episodes of increased rainfall in tropical and subtropical latitudes of the Tethys Sea and its surrounding land. Sediments and fossils suggestive of a more humid climate are known from the Anisian to Ladinian of the Tethysian domain, from the Carnian and Rhaetian of a larger area that includes the Boreal domain, the North
Anatomy is the branch of biology concerned with the study of the structure of organisms and their parts. Anatomy is a branch of natural science which deals with the structural organization of living things, it is an old science. Anatomy is inherently tied to developmental biology, comparative anatomy, evolutionary biology, phylogeny, as these are the processes by which anatomy is generated over immediate and long timescales. Anatomy and physiology, which study the structure and function of organisms and their parts, make a natural pair of related disciplines, they are studied together. Human anatomy is one of the essential basic sciences; the discipline of anatomy is divided into microscopic anatomy. Macroscopic anatomy, or gross anatomy, is the examination of an animal's body parts using unaided eyesight. Gross anatomy includes the branch of superficial anatomy. Microscopic anatomy involves the use of optical instruments in the study of the tissues of various structures, known as histology, in the study of cells.
The history of anatomy is characterized by a progressive understanding of the functions of the organs and structures of the human body. Methods have improved advancing from the examination of animals by dissection of carcasses and cadavers to 20th century medical imaging techniques including X-ray and magnetic resonance imaging. Derived from the Greek ἀνατομή anatomē "dissection", anatomy is the scientific study of the structure of organisms including their systems and tissues, it includes the appearance and position of the various parts, the materials from which they are composed, their locations and their relationships with other parts. Anatomy is quite distinct from physiology and biochemistry, which deal with the functions of those parts and the chemical processes involved. For example, an anatomist is concerned with the shape, position, blood supply and innervation of an organ such as the liver; the discipline of anatomy can be subdivided into a number of branches including gross or macroscopic anatomy and microscopic anatomy.
Gross anatomy is the study of structures large enough to be seen with the naked eye, includes superficial anatomy or surface anatomy, the study by sight of the external body features. Microscopic anatomy is the study of structures on a microscopic scale, along with histology, embryology. Anatomy can be studied using both invasive and non-invasive methods with the goal of obtaining information about the structure and organization of organs and systems. Methods used include dissection, in which a body is opened and its organs studied, endoscopy, in which a video camera-equipped instrument is inserted through a small incision in the body wall and used to explore the internal organs and other structures. Angiography using X-rays or magnetic resonance angiography are methods to visualize blood vessels; the term "anatomy" is taken to refer to human anatomy. However the same structures and tissues are found throughout the rest of the animal kingdom and the term includes the anatomy of other animals.
The term zootomy is sometimes used to refer to non-human animals. The structure and tissues of plants are of a dissimilar nature and they are studied in plant anatomy; the kingdom Animalia contains multicellular organisms that are motile. Most animals have bodies differentiated into separate tissues and these animals are known as eumetazoans, they have an internal digestive chamber, with two openings. Metazoans do not include the sponges. Unlike plant cells, animal cells have neither chloroplasts. Vacuoles, when present, are much smaller than those in the plant cell; the body tissues are composed of numerous types of cell, including those found in muscles and skin. Each has a cell membrane formed of phospholipids, cytoplasm and a nucleus. All of the different cells of an animal are derived from the embryonic germ layers; those simpler invertebrates which are formed from two germ layers of ectoderm and endoderm are called diploblastic and the more developed animals whose structures and organs are formed from three germ layers are called triploblastic.
All of a triploblastic animal's tissues and organs are derived from the three germ layers of the embryo, the ectoderm and endoderm. Animal tissues can be grouped into four basic types: connective, epithelial and nervous tissue. Connective tissues are fibrous and made up of cells scattered among inorganic material called the extracellular matrix. Connective tissue holds them in place; the main types are loose connective tissue, adipose tissue, fibrous connective tissue and bone. The extracellular matrix contains proteins, the chief and most abundant of, collagen. Collagen plays a major part in maintaining tissues; the matrix can be modified to form a skeleton to protect the body. An exoskeleton is a thickened, rigid cuticle, stiffened by mineralization, as in crustaceans or by the cross-linkin