Predictability of intraspecific size variation in extant planktonic foraminifera

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Marina C. RilloThomas Ezard


Planktonic foraminifera (PF) size varies greatly both among and within species. This variation affects our understanding of PF ecology and evolution as well as reconstructions of the ocean-climate system. It is currently accepted that PF species are largest under optimum environmental conditions, where abundance is maximised. This idea is based on observations from marine sediment assemblages; however, these observations either had limited intraspecific resolution or focused on a restricted part of each species' biogeographical range. Here we compile a new global PF shell size dataset to investigate the relationship between intraspecific size variation and abundance and sea surface temperature (SST). Our dataset contains 3817 individual size measurements on nine PF species in 53 surface sediments around the world. For each species, we fitted a generalised linear model of population shell size as function of local abundance (as an indicator of optimum environmental conditions) and SST. We support previous results that species maximum size and maximum abundance rank along SST; however, this relationship is not supported within species. Only two species out of nine revealed a significant positive relationship between size and abun...Continue Reading

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