Steinbauer, M; Schweiger, A; Irl, S: Patterns in Biogeography, Encyclopedia of Evolutionary Biology. vol. 1, Oxford: Academic Press, 221–230 (2016), doi:10.1016/B978-0-12-800049-6.00110-4
Biogeographic patterns result from environmental influences interacting with historic legacies and biotic characteristics. The emergence of biogeographic patterns is often scale dependent and the identification of causal processes is difficult due to complex cross-scale interactions. Prominent biogeographic patterns emerge particularly along strong environmental gradients such as latitude and elevation (species richness, range size, body size, coloration) or under isolated conditions like on islands (island gigantism/dwarfism, island woodiness, and dispersal loss). Historic legacies (such as colonization progression rules) or repeated evolutionary patterns (taxon cycle) may influence current distribution patterns. Yet, global patterns in species traits or growth forms can be clearly associated with specific environmental conditions (e.g., giant rosette plants, trait variability in Solanum).
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