Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History

Richard Bambach

Research Associate
Department / Division
  • Ph. D. Yale University 1969
  • M. S. Yale University 1964
  • B. A. Johns Hopkins University 1957
Research Interests

My main focus is on paleoecology, especially paleocommunity ecology, change in ecosystem structure over time, and patterns of change in marine diversity over time. More specific topics include:

   1) Utilization of ecospace and change in ecosystems over time

   2) The influence of ecospace utilization on diversity

   3) Distinguishing biological signals from taphonomic noise in fossil assemblages

   4) The varied nature of mass extinction events

   5) The implications of periodicity signals detected in diversity over time

   6) The interaction between origination and extinction in controlling diversity

   7) The asymmetry of trends in origination and extinction over time within taxa

Journal Article
Book Chapter
  • Bush, Andrew M., Bambach, Richard K., and Erwin, Douglas H. 2011. "Ecospace Utilization During the Ediacaran Radiation and the Cambrian Eco-explosion." In Quantifying the Evolution of Early Life : Numerical Approaches to the Evaluation of Fossils and Ancient Ecosystems. Laflamme, Marc, Schiffbauer, James D., and Dornbos, Stephen Q., editors. 111–133. Springer Netherlands. 36 in Topics in Geobiology.
  • Bambach, Richard K. 2009. "From empirical paleoecology to evolutionary paleobiology: a personal journey." In The paleobiological revolution: essays on the growth of modern paleontology. Sepkoski, David and Ruse, Michael, editors. 398–415. Chicago & London: University of Chicago Press.
  • Kowalewski, Michal, Kelley, Patricia H., Bambach, Richard K., Baumiller, Tomasz K., Bengtson, Stefan, Brett, Carleton E., Chin, Karen, Culver, Stephen J., Dietl, Gregory P., Farlow, James O., Gahn, Forest J., Haynes, Gary, Holtz,Thomas R., Jr., Jenkins, Ian, Labandeira, Conrad C., Lipps, JereH, Van Valkenburgh, Blaire, Vermeij, Geerat J., and Walker, Sally E. 2002. "The fossil record of predation: methods, patterns, and processes." In The Fossil Record of Predation. Kowalewski, Michal and Kelley, Patricia H., editors. 395–398. Cambridge University Press. In Paleontological Society Special Papers, 8.