Abstract

Models for marine species diversity are proposed in which world oceans with mild, uniform climates are characterized by low species diversity while oceans with cooler polar waters and higher temperature gradients are characterized by high provinciality, high species diversity, and perhaps higher rates of phyletic evolution. Climates that fluctuate between cooling and warming trends will act to create species diversity and enrich the marine biota, whereas times of warming should be times of greatest extinction rates.

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