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Faunal change in Cretaceous endemic shallow-marine bivalve genera/subgenera of the northeast Pacific


Endemic shallow-marine Cretaceous bivalves in the northeast Pacific region (NEP), extending from southwestern Alaska to the northern part of Baja California Sur, Mexico, are tabulated and discussed in detail for the first time. Twenty-three genera/subgenera are recognized. Their first appearance was in the Valanginian, and their biodiversity continued to be very low during the rest of the Early Cretaceous. The bivalves of the middle Albian Alisitos Formation in northern Baja California are excluded because they did not live in the NEP. The highest number (13) of NEP endemic bivalve genera/subgenera occurred during the Turonian, which was the warmest time of the Cretaceous. At the Turonian/Coniacian boundary, when cooler waters migrated southward, there was a moderate dropoff in endemics that persisted until an origination event near the beginning of the early Maastrichtian, when 11 were present. Five of the 11 were present also during the Turonian, but the others were newcomers. Only three survived the turnover associated with the “Middle Maastrichtian Event” (MME), and none survived the K/Pg boundary mass-extinction event.

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