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Low taxonomic resolution of papillate Cupressaceae pollen (former Taxodiaceae) impairs their applicability for palaeo-habitat reconstruction
Swedish Museum of Natural History, Department of Paleobiology. (Paleobiologi)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-4241-9075
Swedish Museum of Natural History, Department of Paleobiology.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9535-1206
2020 (English)In: Grana, ISSN 0017-3134, E-ISSN 1651-2049, Vol. 59, no 1, p. 71-93, article id https://doi.org/10.1080/00173134.2019.1701704Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The former family Taxodiaceae is currently treated as nine genera in five subfamilies of the family Cupressaceae. Pollen ofthe ‘taxodiaceous’ Cupressaceae typically has a papilla in the leptoma area and is common in Cenozoic strata because someof its genera were key elements in lignite forming swamp forests. Dispersed fossil pollen of this group are often assigned toparticular genera and, based on the modern ecologies of these taxa, to particular palaeoenvironments. In this study, weinvestigated pollen of all nine genera of the former Taxodiaceae using light and scanning electron microscopy to evaluatewhether pollen morphology can be used to discriminate modern genera of this paraphyletic group. We found few genus- orsubfamily-diagnostic characters among members of taxodiaceous Cupressaceae. Features such as orbiculae and pollen andleptoma size cannot be used to discriminate subfamilies. However, three basal subfamilies share short papillae, whereas intwo more derived clades (Sequoioideae and Taxodioideae) papillae are markedly longer. In the generally non-papillate coreCupressaceae, the leptoma (aperture) area may or may not possess a distinct circular thinning as also found in the basalgrade of taxodiaceous Cupressaceae. Our results show that it is difficult if not impossible to distinguish genera of theecologically distinct Taxodioideae and Sequoioideae based on pollen morphology. In view of a much wider ecologicalamplitude of many taxodiaceous Cupressaceae during large parts of the Cenozoic, we conclude that it is not recommendableto infer particular palaeoenvironments on the basis of dispersed taxodiaceous pollen grains alone.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
London: Taylor & Francis, 2020. Vol. 59, no 1, p. 71-93, article id https://doi.org/10.1080/00173134.2019.1701704
Keywords [en]
Taxodiaceae, Cunninghamioideae, Taiwanioideae, Athrotaxidoideae, Sequoioideae, Taxodioideae, core
National Category
Other Earth and Related Environmental Sciences Botany
Research subject
Ecosystems and species history; The changing Earth
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:nrm:diva-4158DOI: 10.1080/00173134.2019.1701704OAI: oai:DiVA.org:nrm-4158DiVA, id: diva2:1515948
Funder
Swedish Research Council, 2015-03986Available from: 2021-01-11 Created: 2021-01-11 Last updated: 2021-01-11Bibliographically approved

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