Data from: Were bivalves ecologically dominant over brachiopods in the late Paleozoic? A test using exceptionally preserved fossil assemblages

Shannon Hsieh, Andrew M. Bush & J. Bret Bennington
Interpreting changes in ecosystem structure from the fossil record can be challenging. In a prominent example, the traditional view that brachiopods were ecologically dominant over bivalves in the Paleozoic has been disputed on both taphonomic and metabolic grounds. Aragonitic bivalves may be underrepresented in many fossil assemblages due to preferential dissolution. Abundance counts may further understate the ecological importance of bivalves because they tend to have more biomass and higher metabolic rates than brachiopods. We...
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