Phanerozoic marine diversity and the fossil record

  title={Phanerozoic marine diversity and the fossil record},
  author={J John . Sepkoski and Richard K. Bambach and David M. Raup and James William Valentine},
Strong correlations between various local and global estimates of Phanerozoic marine diversity for taxa below the ordinal level indicate a single pattern of change underlying all data on fossil density. Geological time alone seems insufficient to explain all of the significant covariation among the data sets, and it is proposed that the common pattern in diversity reflects the signal from a real evolutionary phenomenon strong enough to overcome the biases inherent in the fossil record. 

Anatomical and ecological constraints on Phanerozoic animal diversity in the marine realm

We grouped the fossil records of marine animal genera into suites defined by function and physiology. The stratigraphic coherence of the resulting diversity history indicates the importance of

Phanerozoic Trends in the Global Diversity of Marine Invertebrates

It has previously been thought that there was a steep Cretaceous and Cenozoic radiation of marine invertebrates. This pattern can be replicated with a new data set of fossil occurrences representing

The ties linking rock and fossil records and why they are important for palaeobiodiversity studies

Abstract A correlation exists between the quality of the rock record and the diversity of fossils recorded from that rock record but what drives that correlation, and how consistent that correlation

Sustained Mesozoic–Cenozoic diversification of marine Metazoa: A consistent signal from the fossil record

Paleobiological data provide a key historical record of global biodiversity dynamics, but their interpretation is controversial due to geological and sampling biases. Raw data suggest that marine

Phanerozoic marine diversity: rock record modelling provides an independent test of large-scale trends

Using the fossil records of North America and Western Europe, it is demonstrated that a modelling approach applied to the combined data produces results that are significantly correlated with those derived from subsampling.

Marine diversity through the Phanerozoic: problems and prospects

  • A. Smith
  • Environmental Science, Geography
    Journal of the Geological Society
  • 2007
The fossil record provides direct evidence of how diversity has changed over time, but cannot be taken at face value. Diversity curves constructed from counting taxa in the rock record are seriously

Mesozoic marine tetrapod diversity: mass extinctions and temporal heterogeneity in geological megabiases affecting vertebrates

Some evidence supports an extinction event near the Jurassic/Cretaceous boundary, but the proposed end-Cenomanian extinction is probably an artefact of poor sampling, and consideration of sampling biases allows re-evaluation of proposed mass extinction events.

Patterns of generic extinction in the fossil record

Analysis of the stratigraphic records of 19,897 fossil genera indicates that most classes and orders show largely congruent rises and falls in extinction intensity throughout the Phanerozoic. Even an

Phanerozoic Earth System Evolution and Marine Biodiversity

It is shown that Phanerozoic records of seawater chemistry and continental flooding contain information on the diversity of marine animals that is independent of sedimentary rock quantity and sampling, and relationships among variables suggest long-term interactions among continental flooding, sulfur and carbon cycling, and macroevolution.



Species diversity in the Phanerozoic: an interpretation

  • D. Raup
  • Geology, Environmental Science
  • 1976
Species diversity among fossil invertebrates of the Phanerozoic is highly correlated with volume and area of sedimentary rocks. The correlations are statistically significant at the 1% level. The

On the relationship between Phanerozoic diversity and changes in habitable area

Applications of the species-area equation to studies of fluctuations in Phanerozoic diversity have great promise but can involve questionable assumptions. Sepkoski's (1976) analysis of marine

A factor analytic description of the Phanerozoic marine fossil record

  • J. Sepkoski
  • Geography, Environmental Science
  • 1981
Data on numbers of marine families within 91 metazoan classes known from the Phanerozoic fossil record are analyzed. The distribution of the 2800 fossil families among the classes is very uneven,

Species diversity in the Phanerozoic: species-area effects

  • J. Sepkoski
  • Environmental Science, Geology
  • 1976
Raup's (1976a) data on Phanerozoic species numbers are examined for species-area relationships, using published estimates of areas of continental seas. By means of multiple regression, species

Cohort analysis of generic survivorship

  • D. Raup
  • Environmental Science, Geography
  • 1978
Cohort analysis provides an effective method of analysing taxonomic survivorship in the fossil record where large data sets are available. An analysis of the stratigraphic ranges of about 8,500


The total number of taxa of given rank of a fossil group known from each of several successive intervals of geologic time is commonly used as a measure of the relative taxonomic diversity of the

A kinetic model of Phanerozoic taxonomic diversity II. Early Phanerozoic families and multiple equilibria

The kinetic model of taxonomic diversity predicts that the long-term diversification of taxa within any large and essentially closed ecological system should approximate a logistic process controlled

Species diversity in the Phanerozoic: a tabulation

  • D. Raup
  • Geology, Environmental Science
  • 1976
On the basis of about 70,000 species citations in the Zoological Record, it is estimated that about 190,000 fossil invertebrate species were described and named through 1970. The true figure may be

Species richness in the Phanerozoic: an investigation of sampling effects

Given estimates of the variation in total standing species richness through the periods of the Phanerozoic, mean species duration, and the relative intensity of the sampling of the fauna from each of

Species richness in marine benthic habitats through the Phanerozoic

The within-habitat data suggest that the number of marine invertebrate species in the world has increased since the Middle Paleozoic, but possibly only by about 4 times, not the order of magnitude or more suggested by Valentine (1970).