Graduation date: 2000Inferences regarding the biology of extinct taxa are often founded primarily\ud on cladistically-based phylogenetic hypotheses. However, these inferences are\ud frequently inconsistent with the morphology and physiology of modern animals. I\ud suggest that reference to the biology of modern animals might be a more\ud appropriate tool to aid in the reconstruction of the morphology and physiology of\ud extinct animals. Here, this methodology is applied to: (1) reconstruction of the\ud respiratory anatomy and physiology of some Paleozoic archosaurs (dinosaurs, early\ud birds, pterosaurs, and early crocodilians), (2) understanding cursorial locomotion in\ud birds and bipedal dinosaurs, and (3) a reinterpretation of an enigmatic archosaur,\ud Longisquama. The conclusions drawn from these data raise questions regarding\ud current thinking regarding relationships between birds and dinosaurs
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