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Marine Macroecology$
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Jon D. Witman and Kaustuv Roy

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780226904115

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: February 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226904146.001.0001

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Spatial Patterns of Species Diversity in the Shallow Marine Invertebrates: Patterns, Processes, and Prospects

Spatial Patterns of Species Diversity in the Shallow Marine Invertebrates: Patterns, Processes, and Prospects

Chapter:
(p.101) Chapter Four Spatial Patterns of Species Diversity in the Shallow Marine Invertebrates: Patterns, Processes, and Prospects
Source:
Marine Macroecology
Author(s):

Kaustuv Roy

Jon D. Witman

Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226904146.003.0004

Species diversity in the ocean changes along both latitude and longitude as well as with depth. The latitudinal diversity gradient (LDG), with high richness of species and higher taxa in the tropics and declining toward the poles, is considered to be one of the fundamental patterns of biological diversity on the planet. The presence of a latitudinal gradient in taxonomic richness is well established in groups such as marine mollusks, especially in the northern hemisphere, but the trend is less well documented for many other benthic invertebrates. This had led to the obvious question whether a tropical-polar cline in richness is a general pattern in the oceans, especially given the fact that several groups of benthic marine invertebrates show relatively high species richness in the higher latitudes of the southern ocean. It is known that the latitudinal cline in richness holds not just for well-studied invertebrate groups like mollusks but is also present in other groups ranging from crustaceans, bryozoans, epifaunal, invertebrates, and cephalopods to benthic foraminifera, gammaridean amphipods, and sabellid polychaetes.

Keywords:   latitudinal diversity gradient, taxonomic richness, local richness, marine communities, regional species, local species, marine invertebrate, southern ocean

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