Deep-sea lobster. (Photo: CSIC)
Interesting finding on marine wildlife diversification
Tuesday, August 14, 2012, 00:50 (GMT + 9)
A team of experts from the National Higher Research Council (CSIC) argues that marine wildlife recorded a period of rapid diversification 25 million years ago.
According to an international study led by the entity, such diversification could be a result of rising global temperatures, of the tectonic activity and of the changes in the ocean current pattern.
The study, published in the journal Evolution, shows that the phenomenon occurred in the marine wildlife of the Indo-Pacific region.
CSIC said that a genus of the family of crustaceans Galatheidae was used as model.
The scientists addressed the study of taxonomy, phylogenetic relationships, diversification and biogeography of the genus species of crustaceans Paramunida, which live at great depths.
According to the researcher Patricia Cabezas, "the largest concentration of marine biodiversity is located among the Philippines, Indonesia and Malaysia, what is known as 'biodiversity triangle'."
"However, in our study group the diversity peak is shifted towards the arc of the islands of Fiji, Tonga and Vanuatu," continued the expert.
For the researcher, this suggests that the origin of species should not necessarily be associated with the richest area of the Indo-Pacific region.
According to Enrique Macpherson, a researcher at the Centre for Advanced Studies of Blanes, "the realization of this process of rapid diversification in deep-sea fauna is very significant, since we knew that something similar had occurred in different surface water groups of fish, crustaceans and molluscs, but what had happened at a greater depth was unknown," EFE agency reported.
With regard to the possible causes of diversification, Macpherson explained that it is likely that all these processes have facilitated the emergence of new habitats that were rapidly colonized," which in combination with the disruption of gene flow at different depths allowed rapid diversification."
By Analia Murias