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Coryphoid palm leaf fossils from the Maastrichtian-Danian of Central India with remarks on phytogeography of the Coryphoideae (Arecaceae).

Srivastava R, Srivastava G, Dilcher DL - PLoS ONE (2014)

Bottom Line: The specimens are compared with modern and fossil taxa of the family Arecaceae.The fossil record of coryphoid palm leaves presented here and reported from the Eurasian localities suggests that this is the oldest record of coryphoid palm leaves from India and also from the Gondwana- derived continents suggesting that the coryphoid palms were well established and wide spread on both northern and southern hemispheres by the Maastrichtian-Danian.The coryphoid palms probably dispersed into India from Europe via Africa during the latest Cretaceous long before the Indian Plate collided with the Eurasian Plate.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Cenozoic Palaeoflorist Laboratory, Birbal Sahni Institute of Palaeobotany, 53 University Road, Lucknow- 226 007, Uttar Pradesh, India.

ABSTRACT

Premise of research: A large number of fossil coryphoid palm wood and fruits have been reported from the Deccan Intertrappean beds of India. We document the oldest well-preserved and very rare costapalmate palm leaves and inflorescence like structures from the same horizon.

Methodology: A number of specimens were collected from Maastrichtian-Danian sediments of the Deccan Intertrappean beds, Ghughua, near Umaria, Dindori District, Madhya Pradesh, India. The specimens are compared with modern and fossil taxa of the family Arecaceae.

Pivotal results: Sabalites dindoriensis sp. nov. is described based on fossil leaf specimens including basal to apical parts. These are the oldest coryphoid fossil palm leaves from India as well as, at the time of deposition, from the Gondwana- derived continents.

Conclusions: The fossil record of coryphoid palm leaves presented here and reported from the Eurasian localities suggests that this is the oldest record of coryphoid palm leaves from India and also from the Gondwana- derived continents suggesting that the coryphoid palms were well established and wide spread on both northern and southern hemispheres by the Maastrichtian-Danian. The coryphoid palms probably dispersed into India from Europe via Africa during the latest Cretaceous long before the Indian Plate collided with the Eurasian Plate.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Modern leaf of Hyphaene coriacea (modified afterhttp://specimens.kew.org/herbarium/K000462899[45].
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pone-0111738-g006: Modern leaf of Hyphaene coriacea (modified afterhttp://specimens.kew.org/herbarium/K000462899[45].

Mentions: Affinities. The diagnostic features of the fossil leaves include: palmate, plicate leaves with long costa (costapalmate) and unarmed petiole. These characters suggest that the fossil leaves have affinities with the subfamily Coryphoideae in the Arecaceae [5]. A number of palm taxa were examined at the Central National Herbarium, Howrah, Forest Research Institute, Dehradun, National Botanical Research Institute, Lucknow and the website of Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew [45] to find species with similar characters. The fossil leaves show resemblance with a number of coryphoid palms with costapalmate leaves in gross morphology such as Bismarckia nobilis Hildebr. & Wendl., Borassus aethiopum Mart., B. flabellifer L., Corypha taliera Roxb., Hyphaene coriacea Gaertn. (Fig. 6), H. dichotoma Furtado, H. thebaica Mart., Livistona australis Mart., L. boninensis Nakai, L. carinensis Dransf. and Uhl, Sabal bermudana Bailey and Trachycarpus martianus H. Wendle. Except Bismarckia and Sabal all taxa have armed petiole different from our fossil. The leaves of Trachycarpus H. Wendl. are non-costate which differentiates it from the present fossil. The inflorescence like structure of the fossil shows a close resemblance with the Hyphaene Gaertn. by having characteristic shape, striated bracteoles and spatulate large bract associated with floral axis which also gets support from the previous fossil records of Hyphaene from the same horizon [15], [18], [20]. However, due to the lack of spines on the petiole of fossil it cannot be assigned exactly to the modern taxa. As Read and Hickey [43] stated that “Since it is very difficult to identify specimens of modern palms accurately from their leaves alone, no attempt should be made to place fossil palm fragments in genera of modern palms unless unquestionably identifiable with them”. Under these circumstances the fossils are placed in the organ genus Sabalites G. Saporta [44] proposed for costapalmate fossil leaves.


Coryphoid palm leaf fossils from the Maastrichtian-Danian of Central India with remarks on phytogeography of the Coryphoideae (Arecaceae).

Srivastava R, Srivastava G, Dilcher DL - PLoS ONE (2014)

Modern leaf of Hyphaene coriacea (modified afterhttp://specimens.kew.org/herbarium/K000462899[45].
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4230940&req=5

pone-0111738-g006: Modern leaf of Hyphaene coriacea (modified afterhttp://specimens.kew.org/herbarium/K000462899[45].
Mentions: Affinities. The diagnostic features of the fossil leaves include: palmate, plicate leaves with long costa (costapalmate) and unarmed petiole. These characters suggest that the fossil leaves have affinities with the subfamily Coryphoideae in the Arecaceae [5]. A number of palm taxa were examined at the Central National Herbarium, Howrah, Forest Research Institute, Dehradun, National Botanical Research Institute, Lucknow and the website of Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew [45] to find species with similar characters. The fossil leaves show resemblance with a number of coryphoid palms with costapalmate leaves in gross morphology such as Bismarckia nobilis Hildebr. & Wendl., Borassus aethiopum Mart., B. flabellifer L., Corypha taliera Roxb., Hyphaene coriacea Gaertn. (Fig. 6), H. dichotoma Furtado, H. thebaica Mart., Livistona australis Mart., L. boninensis Nakai, L. carinensis Dransf. and Uhl, Sabal bermudana Bailey and Trachycarpus martianus H. Wendle. Except Bismarckia and Sabal all taxa have armed petiole different from our fossil. The leaves of Trachycarpus H. Wendl. are non-costate which differentiates it from the present fossil. The inflorescence like structure of the fossil shows a close resemblance with the Hyphaene Gaertn. by having characteristic shape, striated bracteoles and spatulate large bract associated with floral axis which also gets support from the previous fossil records of Hyphaene from the same horizon [15], [18], [20]. However, due to the lack of spines on the petiole of fossil it cannot be assigned exactly to the modern taxa. As Read and Hickey [43] stated that “Since it is very difficult to identify specimens of modern palms accurately from their leaves alone, no attempt should be made to place fossil palm fragments in genera of modern palms unless unquestionably identifiable with them”. Under these circumstances the fossils are placed in the organ genus Sabalites G. Saporta [44] proposed for costapalmate fossil leaves.

Bottom Line: The specimens are compared with modern and fossil taxa of the family Arecaceae.The fossil record of coryphoid palm leaves presented here and reported from the Eurasian localities suggests that this is the oldest record of coryphoid palm leaves from India and also from the Gondwana- derived continents suggesting that the coryphoid palms were well established and wide spread on both northern and southern hemispheres by the Maastrichtian-Danian.The coryphoid palms probably dispersed into India from Europe via Africa during the latest Cretaceous long before the Indian Plate collided with the Eurasian Plate.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Cenozoic Palaeoflorist Laboratory, Birbal Sahni Institute of Palaeobotany, 53 University Road, Lucknow- 226 007, Uttar Pradesh, India.

ABSTRACT

Premise of research: A large number of fossil coryphoid palm wood and fruits have been reported from the Deccan Intertrappean beds of India. We document the oldest well-preserved and very rare costapalmate palm leaves and inflorescence like structures from the same horizon.

Methodology: A number of specimens were collected from Maastrichtian-Danian sediments of the Deccan Intertrappean beds, Ghughua, near Umaria, Dindori District, Madhya Pradesh, India. The specimens are compared with modern and fossil taxa of the family Arecaceae.

Pivotal results: Sabalites dindoriensis sp. nov. is described based on fossil leaf specimens including basal to apical parts. These are the oldest coryphoid fossil palm leaves from India as well as, at the time of deposition, from the Gondwana- derived continents.

Conclusions: The fossil record of coryphoid palm leaves presented here and reported from the Eurasian localities suggests that this is the oldest record of coryphoid palm leaves from India and also from the Gondwana- derived continents suggesting that the coryphoid palms were well established and wide spread on both northern and southern hemispheres by the Maastrichtian-Danian. The coryphoid palms probably dispersed into India from Europe via Africa during the latest Cretaceous long before the Indian Plate collided with the Eurasian Plate.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus