Oxygen isotope data are compared with relative abundances of selected planktic foraminifera through a ca. 15 m interval at DSDP Site 593 (Tasman Sea, southwest Pacific, 40?S) in which there are prominent changes in population sizes, as well as several evolutionary events. We focus on the relation between faunal and climatic histories. The base of early Miocene oxygen isotope Zone Mi1b (uppermost planktic foraminiferal Zone N.6) is identified from closesampled (c. 14 kyr) isotope records of Globigerina woodi and Cibicides kullenbergi. Chronostratigraphic interpolations, using the first occurrences of Globorotalia praescitula, G. mimea and Praeorbulina curva give an age estimate of ca. 18.4 Ma (cf. 18.1 -18.3 Ma for the base of the zone at DSDP Site 608 (type level, north Atlantic, 43?N) ). Another significant benthic delta18O enrichment event, informally designated as the base of zone "Mi1c", is identified 10 m higher in the sequence at ca. 17.8 Ma. Populations of Globoquadriau dehiscens and Globigerinoides trilobus (inferred to be near the southern margin of their distributions) either reduced considerably or withdrew, particularly in the vicinity of zone "Mi1c". A bioseries linking Globorotalia incognita with G. zealandica developed following the benthic delta18O enrichment spike at the base of Zone Mi1b; the latter species became extinct (at least regionally) just above the base of zone "Mi1c". In contrast, the apparently opportunistic Globorotlia praescitula increased dramatically in abundance at this time; there were also transformations in its architecture, leading to the evolutionary appearance of G. miozea. While planktic foraminifera abundances often do not closely covary with the detailed isotope records and tend to be more stable through time, the near coincidence of evolutionary and biogeographic events with isotopic events suggests at least indirect adaptive responses to climatic changes. Early Miocene middle-latitude planktic foraminiferal evolution, biogeography, and biostratigraphy, may be intimately connected with climatic history.