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Am Nat. 2006 Dec;168(6):805-10. Epub 2006 Oct 18.

Rate of lineage origin explains the diversity anomaly in the world's mangrove vegetation.

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Department of Biology, University of Missouri-St. Louis, St. Louis, Missouri 63121, USA.


The contribution of nonecological factors to global patterns in diversity is evident when species richness differs between regions with similar habitats and geographic area. Mangrove environments in the Eastern Hemisphere harbor six times as many species of trees and shrubs as similar environments in the New World. Genetic divergence of mangrove lineages from terrestrial relatives, in combination with fossil evidence, suggests that mangrove diversity is limited by evolutionary transition into the stressful marine environment, the number of mangrove lineages has increased steadily over the Tertiary with little global extinction, and the diversity anomaly in mangrove vegetation reflects regional differences in the rate of origin of new mangrove lineages.

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