Darren Naish is a British vertebrate palaeontologist and science writer. He obtained a geology degree at the University of Southampton and later studied vertebrate palaeontology under British palaeontologist David Martill at the University of Portsmouth, where he obtained both an M. Phil. and PhD. He is founder of the blog Tetrapod Zoology, created in 2006.
Though initially beginning his research career in palaeontology with the intention of working on fossil marine reptiles, Naish became known for his doctoral work on the basal tyrannosauroid theropod Eotyrannus, a dinosaur that he, together with Steve Hutt and colleagues, named in 2001. He has published articles on the Wealden Supergroup theropods Thecocoelurus, Calamospondylus and Aristosuchus. With Martill and Dino Frey, he named a new illegally acquired Brazilian compsognathid theropod Mirischia. In 2004, Naish and Gareth Dyke reinterpreted the controversial Romanian fossil Heptasteornis. Suggested by other authors to be a giant owl, troodontid or dromaeosaurid, it was argued by Naish and Dyke to be an alvarezsaurid, and as such is the first member of this group to be reported from Europe. Other fragmentary European alvarezsaurid specimens have since been reported.
Naish has also published work on sauropod dinosaurs, pterosaurs, fossil marine reptiles, turtles, marine mammals and other fossil vertebrates, and he has also produced articles on other aspects of zoology. He published a series of articles on poorly known cetaceans during the 1990s and in 2004 published a review article on the giant New Zealand gecko Hoplodactylus delcourti.
In 2004 Naish and colleagues described a giant Isle of Wight sauropod dinosaur that appears closely related to the North American brachiosaurid Sauroposeidon, and informally referred to as Angloposeidon. Prior to the 2006 description of Turiasaurus from Spain, this was the largest dinosaur reported from Europe. In 2005 he coauthored the description of the new Cretaceous turtle Araripemys arturi, and in 2006 he and David Martill published a revision of the South American crested pterosaurs Tupuxuara and Thalassodromeus. During 2007 and 2008, Naish and Martill published a major revision of British dinosaurs; Naish also published work with Barbara Sánchez-Hernández and Michael J. Benton on the vertebrate fossils of Galve in Spain. The Galve fossils are significant in including istiodactylid pterosaurs, heterodontosaurids and spinosaurines. In 2007, Naish co-authored the description of the new sauropod Xenoposeidon with fellow Portsmouth-based palaeontologist Mike P. Taylor. In 2008 he published an evaluation of azhdarchid pterosaurs with Mark Witton, in which they argued that azhdarchids were stork- or ground hornbill-like generalists, foraging in diverse environments for small animals and carrion. Along with his colleagues Mike Taylor and Matt Wedel he published a paper on sauropod neck posture in 2008. In 2010 Naish published a paper on the theoretical flotation abilities of giraffes. In 2011 Hone, Naish and Cuthill published a paper on mutual selection in dinosaurs and pterosaurs In 2013, Naish described Vectidraco daisymorrisae, a small azhdarchoid pterosaur from the Isle of Wight. Also in 2013 Naish and Witton published a follow-up to their 2008 paper on terrestrial stalking in azhdarchid pterosaurs. In 2015 Naish and colleagues published on a new, as yet unnamed, Transylvanian pterosaur taxon.
In 2017, a new species of pycnodont fish, Scalacurvichthys naishi, was named after Naish.
Naish has published several popular books on prehistoric animals including Dinosaurs: How They Lived and Evolved co-authored with Paul Barrett (Natural History Museum 2016) Dinosaur Record Breakers (Carlton Kids 2018), the Dorling KindersleyEncyclopedia of Dinosaurs and Prehistoric Life (2003, with David Lambert and Elizabeth Wyse), the Palaeontological Association book Dinosaurs of the Isle of Wight (2001, with David Martill) and the highly acclaimed BBC Walking with Dinosaurs: The Evidence (2000, with David Martill), produced to accompany the TV series Walking with Dinosaurs. In 2010, he published The Great Dinosaur Discoveries as sole author.
In 2017 Naish published Evolution in Minutes a book answering fundamental questions on the topic of evolution through a collection of mini-essays.
Naish has also published several books on cryptozoology, including Hunting Monsters: Cryptozoology and the Reality Behind the Myths and Cryptozoologicon: Volume I with John Conway and C. M. Kosemen.
His name is also attached to several children's books on prehistoric animals. Naish is an associate editor for the journal Cretaceous Research and was also on the editorial board of the journal The Cryptozoology Review. He acts as a regular book reviewer for the Palaeontological Association.
Naish, D. 2019. Hunting Monsters: Cryptozoology and the Reality Behind the Myths Sirius Publications.
Naish, D. 2017. Evolution in Minutes. Quercus. London.
Naish, D. 2017. Hunting Monsters: Cryptozoology and the Reality Behind the Myths. Sirius.
In 2006, Naish started a weblog, Tetrapod Zoology, that covered various aspects of zoology. In 2007 he joined the ScienceBlogs network. In July 2011, the blog moved to the Scientific American blog network, as of 31 July 2018 the blog has moved away from Scientific American and is hosted independently. Tetrapod Zoology seems to cover most subjects concerning tetrapods. Popular subjects commonly written about include frogs, reptiles, mammals, birds, dinosaurs, pterosaurs, and cryptozoology. Together with colleagues Michael P. Taylor and Mathew Wedel, Naish also contributes to the Sauropod Vertebra Picture of the Week blog.
In 2010, Naish published a collection of early articles from Tetrapod Zoology as a book titled Tetrapod Zoology Book One.
Tetrapod Zoology Podcast
The Tetrapod Zoology Podcast was launched on 1 February 2013 and is the official podcast of the TetZooVerse. The podcast covers all things tetrapod and vertebrate palaeontology. The podcast is hosted by Naish and co-host John Conway, For episode 15 the regular hosts were joined by Memo Kosemen, co-author and artist of Cryptozoologicon.
Tetrapod Zoology Convention
TetZooCon is an annual meeting themed around the contents of the Tetrapod Zoology blog. The convention was first held on 12 June 2014 and has taken places in various venues in London. The convention involves talks on a variety of subjects, ranging from palaeontology to cryptozoology, as well as workshops. The convention is organised by Naish and Conway; Darren traditionally gives a talk himself, whereas John Conway hosts a workshop.
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^Hutt, Stephen; Naish, Darren; Martill, David M.; Barker, Michael J.; Newbery, Penny (2001). "A preliminary account of a new tyrannosauroid theropod from the Wessex Formation (Early Cretaceous) of southern England". Cretaceous Research. 22 (2): 227–242. doi:10.1006/cres.2001.0252. S2CID 16881410.
^Naish, Darren; Martill, David M. (January 2002). "A reappraisal of Thecocoelurus daviesi (Dinosauria: Theropoda) from the Early Cretaceous of the Isle of Wight". Proceedings of the Geologists' Association. 113 (1): 23–30. CiteSeerX10.1.1.394.9404. doi:10.1016/s0016-7878(02)80003-7. ISSN 0016-7878.
^Naish, Darren (January 2002). "The historical taxonomy of the Lower Cretaceous theropods (Dinosauria) Calamospondylus and Aristosuchus from the Isle of Wight". Proceedings of the Geologists' Association. 113 (2): 153–163. CiteSeerX10.1.1.394.8883. doi:10.1016/s0016-7878(02)80017-7. ISSN 0016-7878.
^Naish, Darren; Martll, David M.; Frey, Eberhard (17 May 2006). "Ecology, Systematics and Biogeographical Relationships of Dinosaurs, Including a New Theropod, from the Santana Formation (?Albian, Early Cretaceous) of Brazil". Historical Biology. 16 (2–4): 57–70. CiteSeerX10.1.1.394.9219. doi:10.1080/08912960410001674200.
^Naish, Darren; Dyke, Gareth (1 July 2004). "Heptasteornis was no ornithomimid, troodontid, dromaeosaurid or owl: The first alvarezsaurid (Dinosauria: Theropoda) from Europe". Neues Jahrbuch für Geologie und Paläontologie – Monatshefte. 2004 (7): 385–401. doi:10.1127/njgpm/2004/2004/385.
^Naish, Darren (1 January 2004). "New Zealand's giant gecko: a review of current knowledge of Hoplodactylus delcourti and the kawekaweau of legend". The Cryptozoology Review. 4.
^Naish, Darren; Martill, David M.; Cooper, David; Stevens, Kent A. (2004). "Europe's largest dinosaur? A giant brachiosaurid cervical vertebra from the Wessex Formation (Early Cretaceous) of southern England". Cretaceous Research. 25 (6): 787–795. doi:10.1016/j.cretres.2004.07.002.
^FIELDING, SARAH; MARTILL, DAVID M.; NAISH, DARREN (November 2005). "Solnhofen-Style Soft-Tissue Preservation in a New Species of Turtle from the Crato Formation (Early Cretaceous, Aptian) of North-East Brazil". Palaeontology. 48 (6): 1301–1310. doi:10.1111/j.1475-4983.2005.00508.x. ISSN 0031-0239.
^MARTILL, DAVID M.; NAISH, DARREN (July 2006). "Cranial crest development in the Azhdarchoid pterosaur Tupuxuara, with a review of the genus and tapejarid monophyly". Palaeontology. 49 (4): 925–941. doi:10.1111/j.1475-4983.2006.00575.x. ISSN 0031-0239.
^Naish, D.; Martill, D. M. (1 May 2007). "Dinosaurs of Great Britain and the role of the Geological Society of London in their discovery: basal Dinosauria and Saurischia". Journal of the Geological Society. 164 (3): 493–510. doi:10.1144/0016-76492006-032. ISSN 0016-7649.
^NAISH, D.; MARTILL, D. M. (1 May 2008). "Dinosaurs of Great Britain and the role of the Geological Society of London in their discovery: Ornithischia". Journal of the Geological Society. 165 (3): 613–623. doi:10.1144/0016-76492007-154. ISSN 0016-7649.
^TAYLOR, MICHAEL P.; NAISH, DARREN (1 November 2007). "An Unusual New Neosauropod Dinosaur from the Lower Cretaceous Hastings Beds Group of East Sussex, England". Palaeontology. 50 (6): 1547–1564. doi:10.1111/j.1475-4983.2007.00728.x. ISSN 1475-4983.
^Witton, Mark P.; Naish, Darren (28 May 2008). "A Reappraisal of Azhdarchid Pterosaur Functional Morphology and Paleoecology". PLOS ONE. 3 (5): e2271. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0002271. ISSN 1932-6203. PMC2386974. PMID18509539.
^Taylor, Michael P.; Wedel, Mathew J.; Naish, Darren (June 2009). "Head and Neck Posture in Sauropod Dinosaurs Inferred from Extant Animals". Acta Palaeontologica Polonica. 54 (2): 213–220. doi:10.4202/app.2009.0007. ISSN 0567-7920.
^Henderson, Donald M.; Naish, Darren (July 2010). "Predicting the buoyancy, equilibrium and potential swimming ability of giraffes by computational analysis". Journal of Theoretical Biology. 265 (2): 151–159. doi:10.1016/j.jtbi.2010.04.007. ISSN 0022-5193. PMID20385144.
^HONE, DAVID W.E.; NAISH, DARREN; CUTHILL, INNES C. (19 December 2011). "Does mutual sexual selection explain the evolution of head crests in pterosaurs and dinosaurs?". Lethaia. 45 (2): 139–156. doi:10.1111/j.1502-3931.2011.00300.x. ISSN 0024-1164.
^Naish, Darren; Simpson, Martin; Dyke, Gareth (18 March 2013). "A New Small-Bodied Azhdarchoid Pterosaur from the Lower Cretaceous of England and Its Implications for Pterosaur Anatomy, Diversity and Phylogeny". PLOS ONE. 8 (3): e58451. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0058451. ISSN 1932-6203. PMC3601094. PMID23526986.
^Witton, Mark; Naish, Darren (2013). "Azhdarchid pterosaurs: water-trawling pelican mimics or 'terrestrial stalkers'?". Acta Palaeontologica Polonica. doi:10.4202/app.00005.2013. ISSN 0567-7920.
^Vremir, Mátyás; Witton, Mark; Naish, Darren; Dyke, Gareth; Brusatte, Stephen L.; Norell, Mark; Totoianu, Radu (17 March 2015). "A Medium-Sized Robust-Necked Azhdarchid Pterosaur (Pterodactyloidea: Azhdarchidae) from the Maastrichtian of Pui (Haţeg Basin, Transylvania, Romania)" (PDF). American Museum Novitates. 3827 (3827): 1–16. doi:10.1206/3827.1. hdl:2246/6582. ISSN 0003-0082.
^Cawley, John J.; Kriwet, Jürgen (2017). "A new pycnodont fish, Scalacurvichthys naishi gen. et sp. nov., from the Late Cretaceous of Israel". Journal of Systematic Palaeontology. 16 (8): 659–673. doi:10.1080/14772019.2017.1330772. PMC5849399. PMID29551954.
^ abDarren, Naish (September 2016). Dinosaurs : how they lived and evolved. Barrett, Paul M. (Paleontologist). London, England. ISBN 978-0565093112. OCLC 948337113.
^Fastovsky, David E. (24 August 2017). "Dinosaurs: How They Lived and Evolved by Darren Naish and Paul Barrett". The Quarterly Review of Biology. 92 (3): 305. doi:10.1086/693579. ISSN 0033-5770.
^ abDARREN., NAISH (2018). DINOSAUR RECORD BREAKERS. [S.l.]: CARLTON BOOKS LTD. ISBN 978-1783123810. OCLC 1020279192.
^Lambert, David (2003). Encyclopedia of dinosaurs & prehistoric life. Naish, Darren., Wyse, Elizabeth, Blount, Kitty., Crowley, Maggie., Bada, Kathleen., American Museum of Natural History. London: Dorling Kindersley. ISBN 978-1405300995. OCLC 47232030.
^ abDinosaurs of the Isle of Wight. Martill, David M., Naish, Darren., Palaeontological Association. London: Palaeontological Association. 2001. ISBN 978-0901702722. OCLC 47747920.CS1 maint: others (link)
^ abM., Martill, David (2000). Walking with dinosaurs : the evidence. Naish, Darren. London: BBC. ISBN 9780563537434. OCLC 47696397.
^ abDarren., Naish (2009). The great dinosaur discoveries. London: A & C Black. ISBN 978-1408119068. OCLC 320494340.
^ abDarren, Naish (2017). Evolution in minutes. New York. ISBN 9781786485151. OCLC 1013543810.
^ abDarren, Naish (September 2017). Hunting monsters : cryptozoology and the reality behind the myths. London. ISBN 978-1784288624. OCLC 973280941.
^ abConway, John (2013). Cryptozoologicon : the biology, evolution, and mythology of hidden animals : volume 1. Kosemen, C. M., Naish, Darren. Irregular Books. ISBN 978-1291621532. OCLC 870904128.
^"New and Notable". Skeptical Inquirer. 43 (4): 62. 2019.
^Darren., Naish (2015). Jurassic record breakers. London: Carlton Books Ltd. ISBN 9781783121182. OCLC 903763981.
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^Darren., Naish (2010). Tetrapod zoology. Book one. Naish, Darren. (2nd ed.). Woolsery, North Devon [England]: CFZ Press. ISBN 978-1905723614. OCLC 703648654.
^Dinosaurs and other extinct saurians : a historical perspective. Moody, Richard, 1939–, Geological Society of London. London: Geological Society. 2010. ISBN 9781862393110. OCLC 665581198.CS1 maint: others (link)
^Darren., Naish (2010). Dinosaurs life size (1st ed.). Hauppauge, NY: Barron's. ISBN 9780764163784. OCLC 606761894.
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Hutt, S., Naish, D., Martill, D.M., Barker, M.J., and Newbery, P. (2001). A preliminary account of a new tyrannosauroid theropod from the Wessex Formation (Cretaceous) of southern England. Cretaceous Research, 22: 227–242.
Naish, Darren & Dyke, Gareth J. (2004): Heptasteornis was no ornithomimid, troodontid, dromaeosaurid or owl: the first alvarezsaurid (Dinosauria: Theropoda) from Europe. Neues Jahrbuch für Geologie und Paläontologie Monatshefte 7: 385–401.
Naish, D. & Martill, D. M. 2007. Dinosaurs of Great Britain and the role of the Geological Society of London in their discovery: basal Dinosauria and Saurischia. Journal of the Geological Society, London 164, 493–510.
Naish, D. & Martill, D. M. 2008. Dinosaurs of Great Britain and the role of the Geological Society of London in their discovery: Ornithischia. Journal of the Geological Society, London 165, 613–623.
Naish, D., D.M. Martill, D. Cooper & K.A. Stevens 2004. Europe's largest dinosaur? A giant brachiosaurid cervical vertebra from the Wessex Formation (Early Cretaceous) of southern England. Cretaceous Research25: 787–795.
Naish, D., Martill, D.M. and Frey, E. 2004. Ecology, Systematics and Biogeographical Relationships of Dinosaurs, Including a New Theropod, from the Santana Formation (?Albian, Early Cretaceous) of Brazil. Historical Biology. 2004, 1–14.
Naish, D., Conway, J., Koseman, C. M. All Yesterdays: Unique and Speculative Views of Dinosaurs and Other Prehistoric Animals. Irregular Books, 2012.
Kosemen, C. M., Conway, J. Naish, D. (Foreword), 2013. All Your Yesterdays. Irregular Books.