The Origin and Evolution of Life in the Sea

Book - 2003
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Penguin Putnam
Life on earth began in the sea, and in this tour de force of natural history, authority on marine biology and illustrator Richard Ellis chronicles more than three billion years of aquatic history. From the first microbes and jawless fishes that evolved into the myriad species we know today-sharks, whales, dolphins, and, of course, humans-Ellis reveals the deep evolutionary mysteries of the sea. Encyclopedic in scope and complemented by more than sixty drawings, Aquagenesis is a fascinating work that will astonish readers with the wonder, richness, and complexity of the evolution of life.

"Quite simply, the best account we now have of the origins of human life." (Te Christian Science Monitor)

Baker & Taylor
Retraces the story of life on Earth by revisiting the oceans, where life began and still flourishes in more than 26,000 known species.

Book News
A respected marine biology expert and artist traces the evolutionary path of sea life from the first microbes to the finless and jawless life forms that evolved into modern sharks, whales, penguins, seals, and humans. Writing for general readers with an interest in science, Ellis explains how some animals, having emerged from the sea and adapted to life on land, returned to the sea and again adapted to aquatic existence. Ellis depicts some of these fascinating creatures such as the Helicoprion , a prehistoric shark with spiral saw teeth in his detailed black and white illustrations. He explains that the source of our conception of many of these animals comes from a mixture of fossil records and conjecture. Annotation (c) Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (

Blackwell North Amer
Ellis's detailed drawings bring animals to life that have not been seen for 400 million years, some that rival science fiction monsters for sheer weirdness. Early crocodiles and turtles were three times larger than they are today: and there was once a manatee that was 30 feet long and had no bones below the elbow. There were the trilobites, jointed animals with complex eyes that dominated the seas for 200 million years and then completely disappeared: sharks with teeth on their backs: and others, 50 feet long, with teeth the size of your hand.

& Taylor

The renowned marine biologist and author of The Search for the Giant Squid retraces the grand story of more than three billion years of life on Earth by revisiting the oceans, where life began and still flourishes in more than 26,000 known species. Reprint.

Publisher: New York, N.Y. : Penguin, 2003
ISBN: 9780142001561
Characteristics: xiv, 304 p. : ill. ; 24 cm


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