A comprehensive database of quality-rated fossil ages for Sahul's Quaternary vertebrates.

Rodríguez-Ray, Marta, Herrando-Pérez, Salvador, Brook, Barry W., Saltré, Frédérik, Alroy, John, Beeton, Nicholas, Bird, Michael I., Cooper, Alan, Gillespie, Richard, Jacobs, Zenobia, Johnson, Christopher N., Miller, Gifford H., Prideaux, Gavin J., Roberts, Richard G., Turney, Chris S.M., and Bradshaw, Corey J.A. (2016) A comprehensive database of quality-rated fossil ages for Sahul's Quaternary vertebrates. Scientific Data, 3. 160053. pp. 1-7.

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Abstract

The study of palaeo-chronologies using fossil data provides evidence for past ecological and evolutionary processes, and is therefore useful for predicting patterns and impacts of future environmental change. However, the robustness of inferences made from fossil ages relies heavily on both the quantity and quality of available data. We compiled Quaternary non-human vertebrate fossil ages from Sahul published up to 2013. This, the FosSahul database, includes 9,302 fossil records from 363 deposits, for a total of 478 species within 215 genera, of which 27 are from extinct and extant megafaunal species (2,559 records). We also provide a rating of reliability of individual absolute age based on the dating protocols and association between the dated materials and the fossil remains. Our proposed rating system identified 2,422 records with high-quality ages (i.e., a reduction of 74%). There are many applications of the database, including disentangling the confounding influences of hypothetical extinction drivers, better spatial distribution estimates of species relative to palaeo-climates, and potentially identifying new areas for fossil discovery.

Item ID: 47993
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2052-4463
Keywords: quaternary, megafauna, vertebrate taxonomy, human colonisation
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Funders: Australian Research Council (ARC), University of Adelaide (UA)
Projects and Grants: ARC Discovery Project DP130103842, ARC Discovery Grant DP130103842, ARC Future Fellowship FT110100306, ARC Future Fellowship FT100100200, ARC Future Fellowship FT130101728, ARC Queen Elizabeth II Fellowship DP1092843, ARC Australian Laureate Fellowship FL140100044, ARC Australian Laureate Fellowship FL140100260, ARC Australian Laureate Fellowship FL130100116, ARC Australian Laureate Fellowship FL100100195
Research Data: http://dx.doi.org/10.4227/05/56F077B3054E9
Date Deposited: 23 Mar 2017 23:15
FoR Codes: 04 EARTH SCIENCES > 0403 Geology > 040308 Palaeontology (incl Palynology) @ 50%
21 HISTORY AND ARCHAEOLOGY > 2101 Archaeology > 210102 Archaeological Science @ 50%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970104 Expanding Knowledge in the Earth Sciences @ 50%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970121 Expanding Knowledge in History and Archaeology @ 50%
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