A host of data on the biodistribution, diversity, and taxonomic age patterns of Neogene shallow-sea faunas can be accommodated within a climatic model which assumes that oceans in the late Paleogene were significantly cooler in low latitudes and wanner in high latitudes than at present. These climatic assumptions seem compatible with the state of the art in paleotemperature interpretation; if the model holds, it will effectively eliminate hypotheses of species diversity regulation that depend on the age of climates, and will explain the relative youth of genera and families in the tropics.

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