2014 GSA Annual Meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia (19–22 October 2014)

Paper No. 144-8
Presentation Time: 3:00 PM


HARRIES, Peter J., School of Geosciences, University of South Florida, 4202 East Fowler Ave, NES 107, Tampa, FL 33620, harries@usf.edu

One of the longer-standing debates in the paleontologic literature revolves around the evolutionary tempo and mode of lineages. Despite relatively early considerations of how the records of lineages could be distorted by the well-known incompleteness of the record resulting in what were termed ‘successional’ and ‘transient’ species, by and large most studies have viewed the records investigated as at least relatively continuous. The advent of sequence stratigraphy and the understanding of how the record is built from sequences at various scales has led to revolution in our ability to reconstruct how the stratigraphic record is not only built, but how that record can distort a spectrum of paleobiologic patterns. Building on this shift in thinking, this study examines how different stratigraphic architectures produced under green- and icehouse conditions can influence these patterns, especially within the relatively shallow-water settings that dominate much of the fossil record. To undertake this analysis various patterns of gradual, punctuated, and random walks that have been used in previous studies are analyzed against 5-10 Ma segments of time in the Late Cretaceous and Neogene/Quaternary for which the sea level histories and subsidence patterns are quite well known. This analysis suggests that the patterns investigated in the former interval are much more accurate representations of the various modeled patterns, whereas the latter is biased towards patterns that appear, at least at face value, to be punctuated. This suggests that not only depositional setting, but also the nature of the forcing climatic regime needs to be considered when such analyses are undertaken.