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Latest Paleobotany Stories

2012-05-15 22:26:14

Ancient plants grown in state-of-the-art growth chambers recreating environmental conditions from more than 400 million years ago have shown scientists from the University of Sheffield how soil dwelling fungi played a crucial role in the evolution of plants. This ground breaking work provides fundamental knowledge of how plants colonized the land before roots evolved and the co-evolution of one of the most ancient relationships, between fungi and early plants that played a founding role in...

Ancient Forest In NY More Diverse Than Scientists Thought
2012-03-02 05:38:06

[ Watch the Video ] After unearthing a previously unknown portion of one of the planet´s earliest known forests, archeologists say the fossils of 385-million-year-old trees reveal a far more diverse ecosystem than researchers had previously thought existed. Partially uncovered by quarry workers in 1870, the ancient forest beneath the tiny town of Gilboa, N.Y. has been of intense interest to paleobotanists since the 1920s. Dating back to the Devonian Period, researchers early on...

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2011-05-06 08:34:19

Horsetail plant developed successful set of tools for extreme environments, maintained them for millions of years Over 100 million years ago, the understory of late Mesozoic forests was dominated by a diverse group of plants of the class Equisetopsida. Today, only one genus from this group, Equisetum (also known as horsetail or scouring rush), exists"”and it is a prime candidate for being the oldest extant genus of land plant. There is some debate as to the evolutionary beginnings of...

2010-01-21 13:38:23

One hundred million years ago the earth looked very different from how it does today. Continents were joining and breaking apart, dinosaurs were roaming the earth, and flowering plants were becoming more widespread. The southern hemisphere supercontinent known as Gondwana formed around 180-200 mya during the breakup of Pangaea and then began to split apart about 167 mya. As scientists reconstruct the history of these land masses and life during this period, many questions arise. For example,...

2009-12-08 18:08:30

The collision between the Siberian Plate and North China Plate was a significant geological event in earth history, which led to the final closure of the Paleoasian Ocean and the formation of the Eurasian continent. Despite numerous research efforts in recent decades, the precise time of this event has remained a puzzle until now. New evidence in helping settle this issue is provided by Prof. Deng Shenghui and his colleagues in their paper newly published in Science in China (2009, vol.52)....

2009-10-23 09:31:43

Thirty million years ago, before Ethiopia's mountainous highlands split and the Great Rift Valley formed, the tropical zone had warmer soil temperatures, higher rainfall and different atmospheric circulation patterns than it does today, according to new research of fossil soils found in the central African nation. Neil J. Tabor, associate professor of Earth Sciences at SMU and an expert in sedimentology and isotope geochemistry, calculated past climate using oxygen and hydrogen isotopes in...

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2009-01-27 08:05:00

A recent study by researchers at the University of Bath and London's Natural History Museum has found that scientists' knowledge of the evolution of dinosaurs is remarkably complete. Evolutionary biologists use two ways to study the evolution of prehistoric plants and animals: firstly they use radioactive dating techniques to put fossils in chronological order according to the age of the rocks in which they are found (stratigraphy); secondly they observe and classify the characteristics of...

2008-03-12 03:00:21

By Singleton, Scott Karnes and Live Oak counties and surrounding areas in South Texas (fig. 2) are popular petrified-wood hunting grounds because the late Eocene to Oligocene sediments have undergone extensive primary and secondary mineralization, producing wonderfully colored and patterned specimens. In fact, this same mineralization is responsible for the leaching and subsequent concen tration of uranium at the unconformity between the uppermost Jackson Group (Eocene) and the Oligocene...

2007-07-20 06:04:01

By Manos, Paul S Soltis, Pamela S; Soltis, Douglas E; Manchester, Steven R; Et al Abstract.- It is widely acknowledged that integrating fossils into data sets of extant taxa is imperative for proper placement of fossils, resolution of relationships, and a better understanding of character evolution. The importance of this process has been further magnified because of the crucial role of fossils in dating divergence times. Outstanding issues remain, including appropriate methods to place...

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2007-04-27 11:10:00

Scientists at the University of Chicago and the National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C., have produced new evidence to finally resolve the mysterious identity of what they regard as one of the weirdest organisms that ever lived. Their chemical analysis indicates that the organism was a fungus, the scientists report in the May issue of the journal of Geology, published by the Geological Society of America. Called Prototaxites (pronounced pro-toe-tax-eye-tees), the organism went...


Latest Paleobotany Reference Libraries

Petrified Forest National Park
2013-04-24 16:53:26

Petrified Forest National Park is located in the state of Arizona in the United States. The park holds 221,552 acres of land, of which 50,260 acres are comprised of a designated wilderness. The area was once inhabited by Native American tribes including the basket maker and pueblo peoples. The first American explorers to enter the area arrived while searching for good routes leading from east to west. This group, led by Army Lieutenant Amiel Whipple, surveyed the northern area of the...

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Word of the Day
toccata
  • In music, a work for a keyboard-instrument, like the pianoforte or organ, originally intended to utilize and display varieties of touch: but the term has been extended so as to include many irregular works, similar to the prelude, the fantasia, and the improvisation.
This word is Italian in origin, coming from the feminine past participle of 'toccare,' to touch.
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