University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > Behaviour, Ecology & Evolution Seminar Series > Illuminating the start of complex life: Spatial analysis of Ediacaran ecosystems

Illuminating the start of complex life: Spatial analysis of Ediacaran ecosystems

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Dr. Andrea Manica.

Ediacaran macro-organisms occupy a crucial position in the history of life on Earth, marking the transition between the microbially dominated Proterozoic and the Cambrian explosion of modern animals. The oldest Ediacaran macro-organisms exhibit unique anatomies, making it difficult to resolve their phylogenetic relationships or their basic ecology. However, the sessile nature of Ediacaran macro-organisms, coupled with their in-situ preservation, means that the positions of these fossils on the rock surface encapsulate their life-histories. As a result, detailed spatial analyses enables the resolution of the biological and ecological processes that impacted during their lives. In this talk I will discuss how spatial analyses have enabled us to resolve the reproductive mode of key species, determine the role of competition and local environment on community structure, and investigate the relative balance of stochastic and deterministic within these oldest complex communities.

This talk is part of the Behaviour, Ecology & Evolution Seminar Series series.

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