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Early Triassic marine biotic recovery: the predators' perspective.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(3):e88987.Plos

Abstract

Examining the geological past of our planet allows us to study periods of severe climatic and biological crises and recoveries, biotic and abiotic ecosystem fluctuations, and faunal and floral turnovers through time. Furthermore, the recovery dynamics of large predators provide a key for evaluation of the pattern and tempo of ecosystem recovery because predators are interpreted to react most sensitively to environmental turbulences. The end-Permian mass extinction was the most severe crisis experienced by life on Earth, and the common paradigm persists that the biotic recovery from the extinction event was unusually slow and occurred in a step-wise manner, lasting up to eight to nine million years well into the early Middle Triassic (Anisian) in the oceans, and even longer in the terrestrial realm. Here we survey the global distribution and size spectra of Early Triassic and Anisian marine predatory vertebrates (fishes, amphibians and reptiles) to elucidate the height of trophic pyramids in the aftermath of the end-Permian event. The survey of body size was done by compiling maximum standard lengths for the bony fishes and some cartilaginous fishes, and total size (estimates) for the tetrapods. The distribution and size spectra of the latter are difficult to assess because of preservation artifacts and are thus mostly discussed qualitatively. The data nevertheless demonstrate that no significant size increase of predators is observable from the Early Triassic to the Anisian, as would be expected from the prolonged and stepwise trophic recovery model. The data further indicate that marine ecosystems characterized by multiple trophic levels existed from the earliest Early Triassic onwards. However, a major change in the taxonomic composition of predatory guilds occurred less than two million years after the end-Permian extinction event, in which a transition from fish/amphibian to fish/reptile-dominated higher trophic levels within ecosystems became apparent.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Paläontologisches Institut und Museum, Universität Zürich, Zürich, Switzerland.Paläontologisches Institut und Museum, Universität Zürich, Zürich, Switzerland.West Jordan, Utah, United States of America; New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science, Albuquerque, New Mexico, United States of America.Paläontologisches Institut und Museum, Universität Zürich, Zürich, Switzerland.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

24647136

Citation

Scheyer, Torsten M., et al. "Early Triassic Marine Biotic Recovery: the Predators' Perspective." PloS One, vol. 9, no. 3, 2014, pp. e88987.
Scheyer TM, Romano C, Jenks J, et al. Early Triassic marine biotic recovery: the predators' perspective. PLoS ONE. 2014;9(3):e88987.
Scheyer, T. M., Romano, C., Jenks, J., & Bucher, H. (2014). Early Triassic marine biotic recovery: the predators' perspective. PloS One, 9(3), e88987. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0088987
Scheyer TM, et al. Early Triassic Marine Biotic Recovery: the Predators' Perspective. PLoS ONE. 2014;9(3):e88987. PubMed PMID: 24647136.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Early Triassic marine biotic recovery: the predators' perspective. AU - Scheyer,Torsten M, AU - Romano,Carlo, AU - Jenks,Jim, AU - Bucher,Hugo, Y1 - 2014/03/19/ PY - 2013/10/03/received PY - 2014/01/13/accepted PY - 2014/3/21/entrez PY - 2014/3/22/pubmed PY - 2014/12/24/medline SP - e88987 EP - e88987 JF - PloS one JO - PLoS ONE VL - 9 IS - 3 N2 - Examining the geological past of our planet allows us to study periods of severe climatic and biological crises and recoveries, biotic and abiotic ecosystem fluctuations, and faunal and floral turnovers through time. Furthermore, the recovery dynamics of large predators provide a key for evaluation of the pattern and tempo of ecosystem recovery because predators are interpreted to react most sensitively to environmental turbulences. The end-Permian mass extinction was the most severe crisis experienced by life on Earth, and the common paradigm persists that the biotic recovery from the extinction event was unusually slow and occurred in a step-wise manner, lasting up to eight to nine million years well into the early Middle Triassic (Anisian) in the oceans, and even longer in the terrestrial realm. Here we survey the global distribution and size spectra of Early Triassic and Anisian marine predatory vertebrates (fishes, amphibians and reptiles) to elucidate the height of trophic pyramids in the aftermath of the end-Permian event. The survey of body size was done by compiling maximum standard lengths for the bony fishes and some cartilaginous fishes, and total size (estimates) for the tetrapods. The distribution and size spectra of the latter are difficult to assess because of preservation artifacts and are thus mostly discussed qualitatively. The data nevertheless demonstrate that no significant size increase of predators is observable from the Early Triassic to the Anisian, as would be expected from the prolonged and stepwise trophic recovery model. The data further indicate that marine ecosystems characterized by multiple trophic levels existed from the earliest Early Triassic onwards. However, a major change in the taxonomic composition of predatory guilds occurred less than two million years after the end-Permian extinction event, in which a transition from fish/amphibian to fish/reptile-dominated higher trophic levels within ecosystems became apparent. SN - 1932-6203 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/24647136/Early_Triassic_marine_biotic_recovery:_the_predators'_perspective_ L2 - http://dx.plos.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0088987 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -