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The Paleobiological RevolutionEssays on the Growth of Modern Paleontology$
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David Sepkoski and Michael Ruse

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780226748610

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: February 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226748597.001.0001

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Punctuated Equilibrium versus Community Evolution

Punctuated Equilibrium versus Community Evolution

Chapter:
(p.433) Chapter Twenty-Three Punctuated Equilibrium versus Community Evolution
Source:
The Paleobiological Revolution
Author(s):

Arthur J. Boucot

Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226748597.003.0024

This chapter examines punctuated equilibrium and compares it to the idea of community evolution that emerged from ecological study of the fossil record. It identifies what is believed to be the weakness of the punctuated equilibrium theory and argues that community evolution is based on a more reliable empirical foundation. This chapter explains how punctuated equilibrium fails the sampling test because it assumes that there are only two rate modes characterizing species-level evolution and that newly evolved allopatric taxa have the inherent capability of reinvading the region of the parent species' environment.

Keywords:   punctuated equilibrium, community evolution, fossil record, sampling test, species-level evolution, allopatric taxa, parent species

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