Shallow water marine molluscan faunas are distributed in a pattern of distinct, geographically definable areas. This makes mollusks ideal for studying the distribution of organisms in the marine environment and the processes and patterns that control their evolution. Biogeography and Biodiversity of Western Atlantic Mollusks is the first book to use quantitative methodologies to define marine molluscan biogeographical patterns. It traces the historical development of these patterns for the subtropical and tropical western Atlantic. The book discusses the multistage process of evolving new taxa caused by eustatic fluctuations, ecological stress, and evolutionary selection.
Drawing on his decades of intensive field work, the author defines three western Atlantic molluscan provinces and 15 subprovinces based on his Provincial Combined Index, a modern refinement of Valentine's 50% rule. The faunal provinces-Carolinian, Caribbean, and Brazilian-are discussed in detail. The text defines the physical aspects of the provinces using quantitative data, with water temperature as the primary parameter. It discusses the details of the 15 subprovinces-geographically definable faunal subdivisions-as well as provinciatones, transition zones of provincial overlap.
The author's algorithms demonstrate that the bulk of the molluscan biodiversity is concentrated in 40 separate centers of speciation, ranging from Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, south to Argentina. Many of these evolutionary hotspots reside on remote archipelagos and offshore banks as well as within areas of provincial overlap. The text describes some of the more exotic and poorly known areas and presents maps and color photographs of characteristic habitats, index species, and live animals, including over 400 species of rare and seldom seen shells.
Edward J. Petuch (Florida Atlantic University Boca Raton USA)
Country of Publication:
23 October 2017
Professional and scholarly
Further / Higher Education
Introduction: American Molluscan Faunas in Time and Space The Molluscan Provincial Concept in the Tropical Western Atlantic History of Molluscan Biogeographic Research in the Tropical Western Atlantic Definition of the Molluscan Faunal Province Definition of the Molluscan Faunal Subprovince Provinciatones Geographical Heterochrony Submergence and Endemic Bathyal Faunas Western Atlantic Paleoprovinces and Paraprovincialism Provinces of the Tropical Western Atlantic The Carolinian Province Faunal Analysis of Carolinian Mollusks The Caribbean Province Faunal Analysis of Caribbean Mollusks The Brazilian Province Faunal Analysis of Brazilian Mollusks Western Atlantic Amphiprovincial Mollusks Molluscan Biodiversity in the Georgian Subprovince The Carolinas and Georgia Coastal Lagoons The Carolinas and Georgia Offshore Scallop Beds The Carolinas and Georgia Offshore Coral Bioherms Georgian Deep-Water Areas Palm Beach Provinciatone Molluscan Biodiversity in the Subprovinces of the Florida Peninsula Molluscan Biodiversity in the Floridian Subprovince The Florida Bay Ecosystems The Florida Keys Reef Tracts Deep-Water Areas off the Florida Keys Molluscan Biodiversity in the Suwannean Subprovince Southern and Western Subprovinces of the Carolinian Province Molluscan Biodiversity in the Texan Subprovince The Texan Coastal Lagoons Molluscan Biodiversity in the Yucatanean Subprovince The Yucatanean Coastal Lagoons Endemism on the Offshore Yucatan Banks and Deep-Water Areas Northern Subprovinces of the Caribbean Province Molluscan Biodiversity in the Bermudan Subprovince Molluscan Biodiversity in the Bahamian Subprovince Endemism on the Bahama Banks Endemism in Bahamian Deep-Water Areas Molluscan Biodiversity in the Antillean Subprovince The Belizean Reefs and Eastern Yucatan Islands Endemism in the Greater Antilles Molluscan Biodiversity in the Nicaraguan Subprovince Coastal Central America Endemism on the Bay Islands of Honduras Honduran and Nicaraguan Offshore Banks The San Blas Archipelago Molluscan Biodiversity in the Venezuelan Subprovince The Golfo de Morrosquillo and Colombian Coast Endemism along the Goajira Peninsula The Golfo de Venezuela The Venezuelan Deep-Water Areas Molluscan Biodiversity in the Grenadian and Surinamian Subprovinces The Lesser Antilles and Grenadines Endemism on the Dutch ABC Islands and Los Roques Atoll Endemism on Barbados Molluscan Biodiversity in the Surinamian Subprovince The Amazonian Faunal Barrier Northern Subprovinces of the Brazilian Province Molluscan Biodiversity in the Cearaian Subprovince The Atol das Rocas and Fernando de Noronha Island Molluscan Biodiversity in the Bahian Subprovince The Abrolhos Archipelago and Reef Complexes Endemism on Trindade Island Molluscan Biodiversity in the Paulinian Subprovince Endemism in the Cabo Frio Region Endemism in the South Brazilian Bight The Uruguayan Provinciatone Bibliography Appendix 1: Provincial Index Taxa Appendix 2: Additions to Western Atlantic Molluscan Biodiversity Index
Edward J. Petuch, Ph.D., is a professor of geology in the Department of Geosciences at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, where he teaches courses on oceanography, paleontology, and physical geology. Petuch has collected fossil and living mollusks in Australia, Papua-New Guinea, the Fiji Islands, French Polynesia, Japan, the Mediterranean coast of Europe, the Bahamas, Mexico, Belize, Brazil, and Uruguay. This research has led to the publication of more than 100 papers. His 14 previous books are well-known research texts within the malacological and paleontological communities.
Reviews for Biogeography and Biodiversity of Western Atlantic Mollusks
Professor Petuch draws upon an extraordinary wealth of personal experience and many decades of field work studying both recent and fossil mollusks throughout the western Atlantic, and has produced a prolific body of publications on these faunas. ... [He] is to be commended for clearly and succinctly defining a useful tool for quantifying faunal distinctions among geographic regions. This methodology can also be used to produce a series of testable hypotheses that will serve both as a foundation and as a point of departure for additional research into the effects of geography and ecology on the evolution and diversification of faunas. -From the Foreword by M. G. Harasewych, Ph.D., National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution