sexta-feira, maio 08, 2009

Entrevistas aos bochechos: 5ª pergunta ao Paul Upchurch

RA: In which sense are dinosaurs the best clade to test this sort of tools?

PU: I don’t think they are the best clade, but they are one of the best clades. They are a good place to start because they have a relatively rich fossil record, they have a long fossil record – that spans several geographical events –, they have a virtually global distribution; so they can pick up episodes like the break-up of the continents, changes in sea level. And, of course, relative to other groups they are intensively studied; there are far more people working with dinosaurs in the Mesozoic than there are, say, on crocodiles or lizards. But, I think, the best way to analyze biogeographic history is to take multiple groups, ideally groups that have different groups that have different body sizes and different physiologies. If we show that flowering plants, insects, small mammals and dinosaurs are all showing the same patterns, that reinforces the evidence that, despite differences, in the way they live these groups are all affected to the same geographic events. So, I started with dinosaurs because that is my strength, that is my area of interest… but I am interested expanding the work to other groups as well, or, encourage my colleagues to apply the same methods.

Sem comentários: