Multivariate hierarchical analyses of Early Jurassic Ostracoda assemblages

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Palaeobiogeographic patterns of Early Jurassic ostracods from the northern and southern hemispheres (96 sections located in Europe, North Africa, Western Australia and North and South America) based on 243 species-level records document global patterns of distribution that can be compared to those previously published on ostracods from the European Epicontinental Sea and Tethyan and South Panthalassa areas. All described records of ostracods from both hemispheres spanning the Hettangian to Early Toarcian have been compiled and verified, and their patterns of origin and distribution have been interpreted. Jaccard coefficient of similarity was used to asses similarities among European, American and Tethyan ostracod shelf faunas. The numerical analysis shows a progressive longitudinal gradient in provincialism through the Early Jurassic, consistent with the northward drift of Tethyan ostracod faunas towards the European Epicontinental Sea and the southward movement of European taxa into Tethys and Panthalassa oceans. The spread of cosmopolitan species and extinction of endemic species, allied to the disappearance of geographical barriers, warmer climate conditions and rising sea levels can explain the reduction in ostracod diversity and the east-west provincialism throughout the Early Jurassic. Interchange between hemispheres, including bipolar distributions, are recognized from the Sinemurian time, pointing out that for most of the studied period, the climate worldwide was warm and tropical.
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