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Brachiopods: Cambrian-Tremadoc precursors to Ordovician radiation events

By
Michael G. Bassett
Michael G. Bassett
Department of Geology, National Museum of Wales, Cathays Park, Cardiff CF10 3NP, UK (email: mike.bassett@nmgw.ac.uk)
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Leonid E. Popov
Leonid E. Popov
Department of Geology, National Museum of Wales, Cathays Park, Cardiff CF10 3NP, UK (email: mike.bassett@nmgw.ac.uk)
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Lars E. Holmer
Lars E. Holmer
Institute of Earth Sciences, Department of Historical Geology and Palaeontology, University of Uppsala Norbyvägen 22, S-75236, Uppsala, Sweden (e-maz7:Lars.Holmer@pal.uu.se)
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Published:
January 01, 2002

Abstract

Brachiopod-dominated palaeocommunities incorporating a structure typical of faunal groups within the Palaeozoic Evolutionary Fauna were already present in North and East Gondwana and associated terranes as early as the mid-Cambrian, confined exclusively to shallow marine, inshore environments. The late Cambrian and Tremadoc record of these faunas is incomplete, because of pronounced global sea-level lowstand and subsequent break-up and destruction of the Cambrian Gondwanan margin. It is likely, however, that those groups later forming the core of the Palaeozoic Evolutionary Fauna evolved originally in shallow-water environments of low-latitude peri-Gondwana, and dispersed widely when favourable ecological conditions developed. Conspicuous sea-level rise through the early to mid-Arenig provided newly available habitats in the expanding epeiric seas, where the new faunas evolved and diversified by the mid-Ordovician, when rapid drift separated the early Palaeozoic continents. Relatively short-lived precursor and transitional brachiopod assemblages can be identified on most of the main palaeocontinents prior to the Ordovician radiation of the Palaeozoic Evolutionary Fauna.

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Contents

Geological Society, London, Special Publications

Palaeobiogeography and Biodiversity Change: the Ordovician and Mesozoic–Cenozoic Radiations

J. A. Crame
J. A. Crame
British Antarctic Survey, Cambridge, UK
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A. W. Owen
A. W. Owen
University of Glasgow, UK
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Geological Society of London
Volume
194
ISBN electronic:
9781862394421
Publication date:
January 01, 2002

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