Chapter

Tethys and Teleosts

Peter L. Forey

in Beyond Cladistics

Published by University of California Press

Published in print October 2010 | ISBN: 9780520267725
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520947993 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520267725.003.0013
Tethys and Teleosts

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This chapter focuses on cladistics and addresses questions of tempo and mode of evolution. Do phylogenetic trees reflect or direct our views of Earth history, either regarding the quality of the fossil record or the implication for palaeobiogeographic inference? Can phylogenetic trees imply anything about the rate of taxic diversity through time? Can phylogenetic trees imply anything about the rate of morphological evolution through time? To exemplify the use to which phylogenetic trees may be put, this chapter looks at the evolution of lower teleost fishes through the Cretaceous. The majority of teleosts (16,000 modern species) belong in the clade Acanthomorpha. There were clear vicariant events during late Jurassic times between Northern and Southern Hemisphere continents, and these imposed a geographic pattern reaching from Mexico in the west, along the northern edge of Tethys to North Africa in the east. For some clades of lower teleosts, there is concordance between phylogeny and palaeogeography. This chapter also discusses the distributions of three groups of teleosts: aspidorhynchids, ellimichthyiforms, and chanoids.

Keywords: Tethys; teleosts; phylogeny; palaeogeography; distributions; aspidorhynchids; ellimichthyiforms; phylogenetic trees; Cretaceous; evolution

Chapter.  6361 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Evolutionary Biology

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