Conodont diversification during the Ordovician: a perspective from North China and Tarim (Northwestern China)

RongChang Wu, Ian G. Percival, Svend Stouge, RenBin Zhan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Review of the literature on Ordovician conodont diversification in palaeoplates of North and Western China reveals that four diversity peaks are present in North China, occurring in the middle Tremadocian, early Floian, late Floian, and late Darriwilian, with three of these peaks (excepting that in the late Floian) also being recorded in Tarim. Three diversification intervals are present in North China, during the Tremadocian, late Floian, early and middle Darriwilian; comparable intervals are observed in the early and late Tremadocian, early Floian, and the Middle Ordovician in Tarim. The main conodont diversification episode in both palaeoplates took place in the Darriwilian, at the time of the Great Ordovician Biodiversification Event. A comparison of conodont diversity patterns in different palaeoplates (North China, Tarim, and South China) demonstrates that conodont radiation events mainly occurred within the Tremadocian, Floian, and Darriwilian. Conodont diversifications in these paleoplates also display some differences. In contrasting with Tarim and South China, North China witnessed a rapid conodont diversification during late Floian time. Conodont diversity in North China and Tarim increased continually and reached a peak in the late Darriwilian, concurrent with a prominent decreasing trend in South China. Differences of conodont diversification in these three palaeoplates may be related to their palaeogeography and tectonic history. When conodont diversifications in North China and Tarim are analysed on the background of palaeoenvironments, the main episodes are seen to be partly coincident with second order sea-level changes, particularly in North China. In general, conodont radiation correlates with large scale transgressions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)397-407
Number of pages11
JournalScience China Earth Sciences
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • conodont diversification
  • Ordovician
  • North China
  • Tarim


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