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Age and identity of the oldest pine fossils: COMMENT

Hilton, Jason; Riding, James B.; Rothwell, Gar W.. 2016 Age and identity of the oldest pine fossils: COMMENT. Geology, 44 (8). e400-e401. 10.1130/G38050C.1

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Abstract/Summary

In their study of charred conifer twigs from the Lower Cretaceous Chaswood Formation of Canada, Falcon-Lang et al. (2016) established the species Pinus mundayi that they interpreted as a “two needled” pine and the oldest stratigraphic evidence for the extant genus Pinus. This is based on their interpretation of what they thought was distinctive wood anatomy and paired needle bases of Pinus evident in their fossils, while the Valanginian age (ca. 140‒133 Ma) is based on revised palynostratigraphy. If correctly interpreted, this material predates the oldest known species Pinus yorkshirensis from the Hauterivian‒Barremian transition at ca. 131–129 Ma (Ryberg et al., 2012), and pushes back the earliest occurrence of the genus by 4–11 m.y. However, we consider that a more thorough examination reveals that P. mundayi is from the Valanginian– Barremian (ca. 140–125 Ma) and that Falcon-Lang et al. have misinterpreted the anatomy of their fossils and erroneously assigned them to the genus Pinus.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.1130/G38050C.1
ISSN: 0091-7613
Date made live: 18 Aug 2016 14:27 +0 (UTC)
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/514297

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