The study of echinoid evolution, diversity, and ecology has always suffered from the fact that they are represented by taxa showing widely differing architectural designs of their multi-plated skeletons, inhabiting a large range of marine paleoenvironments, which result in highly varying taphonomic biases dictating their presence and recognition. This Element addresses the taphonomy of echinoids and includes: a general introduction to the morphological features of echinoids that play a role in their preservation; a review of processes which play an important role in the differential preservation of both regular and irregular echinoids including predation and transport; a summary of taphonomic pathways included in actualistic studies for recent sea urchins and then reconstructed for fossil taxa; and finally, a case study of the variation of echinoid taphonomy across a shelf gradient using the rich Miocene echinoid fauna of Sardinia.
1. General Introduction
2. Multi-plated Skeletons and Regeneration
3. Influence of Test Architecture and Environment
4. Predation and Parasitism as Taphonomic Agents
5. Preservation Pathways in the Recent and Past
6. A Case Study of Echinoid Preservation: The Miocene of Sardinia
7. Conclusions and Future Work