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A Southern Hemisphere bathyal fauna is distributed in latitudinal bands


O'Hara, TD and Rowden, AA and Bax, NJ, A Southern Hemisphere bathyal fauna is distributed in latitudinal bands, Current Biology, 21, (3) pp. 226-230. ISSN 0960-9822 (2011) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2011 Elsevier Ltd

DOI: doi:10.1016/j.cub.2011.01.002


The large-scale spatial distribution of seafloor fauna is still poorly understood. In particular, the bathyal zone has been identified as the key depth stratum requiring further macroecological research [1], particularly in the Southern Hemisphere [2]. Here we analyze a large biological data set derived from 295 research expeditions, across an equator-to-pole sector of the Indian, Pacific, and Southern oceans, to show that the bathyal ophiuroid fauna is distributed in three broad latitudinal bands and not primarily differentiated by oceanic basins as previously assumed. Adjacent faunas form transitional ecoclines rather than biogeographical breaks. This pattern is similar to that in shallow water despite the order-of-magnitude reduction in the variability of environmental parameters at bathyal depths. A reliable biogeography is fundamental to establishing a representative network of marine reserves across the world's oceans [1, 3].

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:animal, biodiversity, cluster analysis, geography, multivariate analysis, population density, sea
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Ecology
Research Field:Marine and estuarine ecology (incl. marine ichthyology)
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Marine systems and management
Objective Field:Marine biodiversity
UTAS Author:Bax, NJ (Professor Nicholas Bax)
ID Code:119020
Year Published:2011
Web of Science® Times Cited:64
Deposited By:Ecology and Biodiversity
Deposited On:2017-07-25
Last Modified:2017-11-06

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