Advanced search
Start date
(Reference retrieved automatically from Web of Science through information on FAPESP grant and its corresponding number as mentioned in the publication by the authors.)

Re-evaluation of the ``law of constant extinction{''} for ruminants at different taxonomical scales

Full text
Januario, Matheus [1] ; Quental, Tiago B. [1]
Total Authors: 2
[1] Univ Sao Paulo, Inst Biociencias, Dept Ecol, Sao Paulo - Brazil
Total Affiliations: 1
Document type: Journal article
Source: Evolution; v. 75, n. 3 FEB 2021.
Web of Science Citations: 0

The ``law of constant extinction,{''} proposed by Van Valen, states that long and short-lived taxa have equal chances of going extinct. This pattern of age-independent extinction was originally inferred using the fossil record of several different taxa and relied on survivorship curves built from the literal reading of the fossil record. Van Valen's seminal work was mostly done at higher taxonomic levels, hence its prevalence at the species level could not be directly inferred. The surprisingly few subsequent studies done at the species level have challenged the prevalence of age-independent extinction, but those have, for the most part, failed to explicitly incorporate inherent biases of the fossil record. Using a recent Bayesian framework that accounts for several of those biases, including the fact that very short-living lineages might never make to the record itself, we showed that Ruminantia species present age-dependent extinction, where extinction probability decreases with species age. An analysis at the genus level suggested age-independent extinction but further examination suggested that the pattern might be more complex than previously reported by Van Valen. Our results indicate that different taxonomic levels may present different extinction regimes, which could justify the development of new macroevolutionary theory and methods. (AU)

FAPESP's process: 12/04072-3 - The role of extinction and speciation rates, and the effect of different levels of biological organization on the origin and maintenance of biodiversity
Grantee:Tiago Bosisio Quental
Support Opportunities: Research Grants - Young Investigators Grants
FAPESP's process: 18/05462-6 - Ecological controls of biodiversity in deep time
Grantee:Tiago Bosisio Quental
Support Opportunities: Regular Research Grants