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Nothofagus subgenus Brassospora (Nothofagaceae) leaf fossils from New Zealand: a link to Australia and New Guinea?


Carpenter, RJ and Bannister, JM and Lee, DE and Jordan, GJ, Nothofagus subgenus Brassospora (Nothofagaceae) leaf fossils from New Zealand: a link to Australia and New Guinea?, Linnean Society. Botanical Journal, 174, (4) pp. 503-515. ISSN 0024-4074 (2014) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2014 The Linnean Society of London

DOI: doi:10.1111/boj.12143


Nothofagus palustris sp. nov. is the first record of well-preserved leaves of Nothofagus subgenus Brassospora in New Zealand, and is described from an Oligo–Miocene leaf bed in the Gore Lignite Measures of the South Island. Nothofagus palustris is represented by relatively small and variably toothed leaves with cuticular remains that possess all the characteristic features of the subgenus, including the presence of variably sized stomata that are randomly arranged within areoles, hydathodes along the major veins and ‘bulging cells’ within the areoles on the adaxial side. Phylogenetic assessment shows that the leaves are similar to those of Australian Oligocene and Miocene species and may belong to the same clade of Brassospora. Most notably, these species share the derived feature of abundant leaf wax, a feature that is now only well developed in two New Guinean species. This and other evidence allows the possibility that the ancestor of N. palustris reached New Zealand from Australia. However, it is improbable that N. palustris or a similar species was the common ancestor of the clade of Brassospora that is now confined to New Caledonia. Ecologically, N. palustris is unusual among extant and previously described macrofossil species of Brassospora in being found in a relatively open, swampy habitat.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:biogeography, cuticle, lignite, New Caledonia, Newvale, Oligo–Miocene, phylogenetic analysis, swamp, Nothofagus, fossil
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Evolutionary biology
Research Field:Biogeography and phylogeography
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in the environmental sciences
UTAS Author:Jordan, GJ (Professor Greg Jordan)
ID Code:98530
Year Published:2014
Funding Support:Australian Research Council (DP110104926)
Web of Science® Times Cited:15
Deposited By:Plant Science
Deposited On:2015-02-18
Last Modified:2017-11-01

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