Filtration theory was developed by engineers to model the removal of particulate matter from industrial gases. Recently, it has been used by biologists and paleo-biologists to model the capture of food particles by filter feeding organisms. The purpose of this study was to test paleosynecologic (biofacies-level) and paleoautecologic (species-level) models of crinoid distribution utilizing filtration theory. These models were tested by analyzing the crinoid faunas of three transgressive-regressive sequences from the Upper Pennsylvanian Lansing Group of midcontinent North America.
A stratigraphic and paleontological analysis of 303 samples of Paleocene sediments of the eastern Gulf Coastal Plain of Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia provided the basis for a geochronologic, quantitative paleoecologic, and paleoceanographic model.
The purpose of this dissertation were threefold: (1) to develop a taphonomically-based facies (taphofacies) model for a classic, modern carbonate system, the south Florida shelf; (2) to compare and contrast the south Florida taphofacies model to the only other published modern carbonate taphofacies model, that of Parsons (1992) study of the northeastern Caribbean; (3) to compare and contrast a taphofacies model developed from the total mollusc assemblage (pooled sample approach) to models that only evaluate taphonomic changes within a single taxon as it occurs in different environments.