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Arthropods in modern resins reveal if amber accurately recorded forest arthropod communities [Ecology]

It is not known whether the fossil content of amber accurately represents the arthropod biodiversity of past forests, and if and how those fossils can be compared with recent fauna for studies and predictions of biodiversity change through time. Our study of arthropods (mainly insects and spiders) living around the resinous angiosperm tree Hymenaea verrucosa Gaertner, 1791 in the lowland coastal forest of Madagascar, and arthropods trapped by the resin produced by this tree species, demonstrates that amber does not record the true past biodiversity of the entire forest. However, our results reveal how taphonomic processes, arthropod behaviors, and ecological relationships can influence arthropod death assemblages in resins and play a crucial role in controlling their taxonomic compositions.

Authors:   Mónica M. Solórzano Kraemer; Xavier Delclòs; Matthew E. Clapham; Antonio Arillo; David Peris; Peter Jäger; Frauke Stebner; Enrique Peñalver
Journal:   Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences current issue
Volume:   115
edition:   26
Year:   2018
Pages:   6739
DOI:   10.1073/pnas.1802138115
Publication date:   26-Jun-2018
Facts, background information, dossiers
  • Madagascar
  • insects
  • fossils
  • ecology
  • controlling
More about Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
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