Multi-scale interplays of biotic and abiotic drivers shape mammalian sub-continental diversity over millions of years

Scientific Reports
Juan L CantalapiedraLaura Domingo

Abstract

The reconstruction of deep-time diversity trends is key to understanding current and future species richness. Studies that statistically evaluate potential factors affecting paleodiversity have focused on continental and global, clade-wide datasets, and thus we ignore how community species richness build-up to generate large-scale patterns over geological timescales. If community diversity is shaped by biotic interactions and continental and global diversities are governed by abiotic events, which are the modulators of diversity in subcontinental regions? To address this question, we model Iberian mammalian species richness over 13 million years (15 to 2 Ma) using exhaustive fossil evidence for subcontinental species' ecomorphology, environmental context, and biogeographic affinities, and quantitatively evaluate their impact on species richness. We find that the diversity of large Iberian mammals has been limited over time, with species richness showing marked fluctuations, undergoing substantial depletions as diversity surpasses a critical limit where a significant part of the niches is unviable. The strength of such diversity-dependence has also shifted. Large faunal dispersals and environmental heterogeneity increased the sy...Continue Reading

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Citations

Apr 8, 2020·Proceedings. Biological Sciences·Roger A CloseRichard J Butler
Feb 20, 2019·Nature Ecology & Evolution·Roger A CloseRichard J Butler

Related Concepts

Metazoa
Biological Evolution
Fossils
Biodiversity
Extinction, Species
Phylogeography
Environment
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