Past and future decline of tropical pelagic biodiversity

Moriaki Yasuhara, Chih-Lin Wei, Michal Kucera, Mark Costello, Derek Tittensor, Wolfgang Kiessling, Timothy Bonebrake, Clay Tabor, Ran Feng, Andrés Baselga, Kerstin Kretschmer, Buntarou Kusumoto & Yasuhiro Kubota
A major research question concerning global pelagic biodiversity remains unanswered: when did the apparent tropical biodiversity depression (i.e., bimodality of latitudinal diversity gradient [LDG]) begin? The bimodal LDG may be a consequence of recent ocean warming or of deep-time evolutionary speciation and extinction processes. Using rich time-slice datasets of planktonic foraminifers, we show here that a unimodal (or only weakly bimodal) diversity gradient, with a plateau in the tropics, occurred during the last ice age...
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