Monday, January 23, 2017

Happy Birthday, Tet Zoo!

Dr. Darren Naish's blog Tetrapod Zoology is like nothing else: an always-lively exploration of topics in zoology, paleobiology, and cryptozoology (Naish keeps an open mind about the latter but is not at all impressed with its results).    He can get very technical (he loves temospondyls) or very "pop" (exploring the idea of sea serpents.)  Even his most technical work, though, is understandable thanks to clear writing and deep knowledge of all his topics.  (In case you, too, are wondering, temospondyls are a subclass of unusual prehistoric beasts once classified as reptiles. I remember owning a set of plastic toy dinosaurs that included Eryops, a splendid example of the group.)
Before he was with the blog network of Scientific American, Naish's blog was a standalone enterprise, and this entry (on, what else, temospondyls) is an example of that iteration.  Many of the early items were collected in this book.  Whether the topic is Britain's largest dinosaur (discovered by Naish), the re-imagining of cryptooology as "speculative biology," the plausibility of Godzilla, or reports of giant orangutans, Naish will keep a science buff reading for hours, or days, or weeks.

Finally, I should note Darren contributed a great deal to the chapters of my book Shadows of Existence: Discoveries and Speculations in Zoology that concern hybrid, reported, or speculative cetaceans, and I am forever grateful.

Happy birthday, Tet Zoo!

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