Marine biogeography, the study of the spatial distribution of organisms in the world’s oceans, is one of the most fascinating branches of oceanography. This book continues the pioneering research into the distributions of molluscan faunas, first studied by biologists over 160 years ago. It illustrates 1778 species of gastropods in full color, many of which are extremely rare and poorly known endemic species that are illustrated for the first time outside of their original descriptions.
The spatial arrangements of malacofaunas shown in this book can be considered proxies for worldwide oceanic conditions and used as tools for determining patterns of global climate change. The book's documentation of evolutionary "hot spots" and geographically restricted endemic faunas can also be used as a base line for future studies on patterns of environmental deterioration and extinction in the marine biosphere.
Documenting the evolution of the amazingly rich worldwide gastropod fauna, this book will appeal to physical and chemical oceanographers, systematic and evolutionary biologists, historical geologists, paleontologists, climatologists, geomorphologists, and physical geographers. The authors incorporate aspects of all of these disciplines into a new classification system for the nomenclature of biogeographical spatial units found in tropical, subtropical, and warm temperate seas.
Introduction. Acknowledgments. Foreword. Chapter1. Biogeographical Patterns in the Marine Biosphere. Chapter 2. Western Atlantic Region. Chapter 3. Eastern Atlantic Region. Chapter 4. Eastern Pacific Region. Chapter 5. Indo-Pacific Super-Region and Central Pacific Region. Chapter 6. Western Pacific Tropical Region. Chapter 7. Indian Tropical Region. Chapter 8. Australian Super-Region and North Tropical Australian Region. Chapter 9. South Australian Paratropical Region. Chapter 10. Southern Africa Region. Bibliography. Systematic Index. Biogeographical Index.
"From ground-breaking research into the biogeography of tropical mollusks, this book takes patterns in biological diversity to a new level. At its most detailed, it distinguishes small centers of speciation, hotspots of endemism such as isolated islands and bays, that are pivotal in determining, for example, the impact of environmental degradation. Through the application of a new, more detailed classification system, these hotspots can now be identified and are here biogeographically represented, setting a whole new paradigm. I applaud this work with its outstanding explanatory maps and images. It will be invaluable, not only to marine ecologists, but also evolutionary biologists and biogeographers, as well as malacologists and shell collectors and, indeed, any reader interested in the ocean environment."
Howard Peters, PhD, Department of Environment & Geography, University of York, UK