families as biotic units?

Allan Shanfield anshanfield at UCDAVIS.EDU
Sun Feb 28 14:40:12 CST 1999

Dear Taxacomers,

Please forgive the simplistically broad scope of my question but I am
interested in: Do families act as biological units? - especially in
terms of competition both current and in the paleo record.

To wit: Witness the broad success of Dipteerocarpace and its numerous
guilds within as demonstrated by M. Ashton- perhaps at expense of other
families. It has been attributed that there is a mycorrhizal component or
who that arrives at a place first stays but still..

And the success of some laurasian/arcto-tertiary families that ovveran
tropical montane highlands, perhaps at expense of more Neotropical (and
maybe mostly Gondwanan families).

If anyone has any references in this regard I would greatly appreciate
this (perhaps best directy email me for this may diverge too far from
Taxacom's mission). If desired, I can cite my references either personaly
or via personal email.

Was/is there competition at the family level, has this been tested or
no...from my vantage point there does seem to be evidence that some
familes are more vigorous than others. If so, then have certain
characteristics been evaluated (the question is "what" of course).

Thank you very much.


Allan Shanfield

1 Shields Ave.
Dept. of Environmental Horticulture
UC Davis, CA 95616

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