Spatial response of mammals to late quaternary environmental fluctuations

Russell W. Graham, Ernest L. Lundelius, Mary Ann Graham, Erich K. Schroeder, Rickard S. Toomey, Elaine Anderson, Anthony D. Barnosky, James A. Burns, Charles S. Churcher, Donald K. Grayson, R. Dale Guthrie, C. R. Harington, George T. Jefferson, Larry D. Martin, H. Gregory McDonald, Richard E. Morlan, Holmes A. Semken, S. David Webb, Lars Werdelin, Michael C. Wilson

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Abstract

Analyses of fossil mammal faunas from 2945 localities in the United States demonstrate that the geographic ranges of individual species shifted at different times, in different directions, and at different rates in response to late Quaternary environmental fluctuations. The geographic pattern of faunal provinces was similar for the late Pleistocene and late Holocene, but differing environmental gradients resulted in dissimilar species composition for these biogeographic regions. Modern community patterns emerged only in the last few thousand years, and many late Pleistocene communities do not have modern analogs. Faunal heterogeneity was greater in the late Pleistocene.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1601-1606
Number of pages6
JournalScience
Volume272
Issue number5268
StatePublished - Jun 14 1996

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Cite this

Graham, R. W., Lundelius, E. L., Graham, M. A., Schroeder, E. K., Toomey, R. S., Anderson, E., Barnosky, A. D., Burns, J. A., Churcher, C. S., Grayson, D. K., Guthrie, R. D., Harington, C. R., Jefferson, G. T., Martin, L. D., McDonald, H. G., Morlan, R. E., Semken, H. A., Webb, S. D., Werdelin, L., & Wilson, M. C. (1996). Spatial response of mammals to late quaternary environmental fluctuations. Science, 272(5268), 1601-1606.