1 Natural History Museum of Denmark, Faculty of Science, Københavns Universitet2 unknown3 Natural History Museum of Denmark, Faculty of Science, Københavns Universitet
Patterns of distribution and ecospace utilization of Late Ordovician brachiopods in a recently formed, contemporary meteorite crater are described and analyzed. Rhynchonelliformean brachiopod communities, dominated by a wide range of orthides and strophomenides, colonized the newly formed crater. At the crater rim communities were established early on, although the crater depression was not inhabited until deposition of the upper third of the remaining crater fill. The crater formed a protected but restricted microenvironment where sediments four times the thickness of the nearby basinal succession accumulated. Within this narrow space environments varied from shallow-water to deeper-waters, about 200 m in depth, and from well oxygenated to hypoxic. Such varied environments generated a rough ecological landscape, facilitating niche partitioning across a relatively small geographic area. Analysis of the guild structure of the fauna permits explanation of a local biodiversity hotspot in otherwise low-diversity strata elsewhere in the Scandinavian region. The Tvaren impact event had an important palaeobiologic effect upon the fossil record as it served as a local pump and reservoir for biodiversity. Moreover the development of new community types and narrowly-defined niches helped further drive both a and p biodiversity during a critical phase of the Great Ordovician Biodiversification Event (C) 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 2013, Vol 369, p. 114-124