Messel – Ein fossiles Tropenökosystem

Stephan F. K. Schaal; Krister T. Smith; Jörg Habersetzer: Messel – Ein fossiles Tropenökosystem. E. Schweizerbart’sche Verlagsbuchhandlung 2018

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This is the latest summary of the current knowledge of the fossil fauna and flora of the Middle Eocene of Messel, Germany. You can actually get it in two versions, a German one and a English one.

The book indeed covers all of the mammal-, bird-, reptile-, amphibian-, and fish species, as well as probably only some of the insect species known at the date of publication, yet, and that is very annoying, contains only a very small ammount of plant species, which probably is because their fossils are not yet fully examined, who knows.

There are photos of all species covered, reconstructions of some of the mammals, but actually none of the birds, however, the book contains three murals (at least I think they are murals), which again show several of the Messel birds (however, without naming them), among them the famous Messel ‘rail’, unfortunately with a way too short tail and a fleshy comb on its head (I will get back to that some time ….).

All in all, the book can be recommended to all who are interested in Eocene biodiversity!   🙂

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edited: 20.03.2019

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