Members of the Throughflow Marie Curie ITN
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Southeast Asia hosts the maximum centre of coral diversity. Evidence from palaeontological and molecular studies suggests that the Miocene was an important period for diversification in the region. However, the fossil record is markedly undersampled. Of the ~200 species of azooxanthellate corals present in the region, only 49 species are known in the fossil record.
Studies on coral communities living in marginal conditions (i.e. low light, high turbidity, extreme temperatures, high nutrients) are important to understand how coral reefs will respond to current global changes. The Kutai Basin (East Kalimantan (Indonesia) contains a rich and well-preserved Miocene fossil record of small patch reefs that developed under the influence of high siliciclastic inputs from the Mahakam Delta.