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Spatial Variation in Predation in the Plio-Pleistocene Pinecrest Beds, Florida, USA

Frank L. Forcino1*, Holly J. Hurding-Jones1, and Emily S. Stafford1

1Department of Geosciences and Natural Resources, Western Carolina University, Cullowhee, NC, 28723. *Corresponding author.

Eastern Paleontologist, No. 4 (2019)

Abstract
We examined six temporally equivalent assemblages distributed across 700 m in the Plio- Pleistocene Pinecrest beds (Tamiami Formation, southern Florida) and found significant spatial vari- ability in predation trace frequencies (drillholes and repair scars) among marine mollusks (ranging from 0.03 to 0.11 for all mollusks combined). We then explored potential causes for the variability we observed. Overall, there was little inter-sample variability in diversity metrics (generic richness, even- ness, and Shannon-Wiener Index) and paleocommunity composition or characteristics (i.e., life modes and feeding strategies). The variation in predation trace frequencies suggests that a single sample from a locality may be insufficient to represent the predation patterns of the entire bed.

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