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Paleobotanical Section

Stockey, Ruth A. [1], Wiebe, Nicholas J.P. [1].

Taxodiaceous pollen cones from the Lower Cretaceous of Vancouver Island, Canada.

Four small pollen cones bearing pollen have been found attached to a leafy twig in the calcareous nodules from the Apple Bay Locality, northern Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada. Specimens were prepared using the cellulose acetate peel technique and pollen was examined using scanning and transmission electron microscopy. Small, globose cones bear helically arranged microsporophylls with a central resin canal. Sporophylls bear three abaxial pollen sacs. The pollen sac walls are comprised of radially elongate rectangular cells with prominently thickened walls. Most pollen sacs are intact and contain numerous, non-saccate pollen grains. Pollen is 16-24 m in diameter with one exit papilla that forms a low protuberance on the grain. External surfaces of grains are scabrate with numberous orbicules and macrogranules and the nexine is laminated. Cone and pollen morphology most closely resemble taxa of the taxodiaceous Cupressaceae. The number of pollen sacs per microsporophyll are similar to Athrotaxis, Metasequoia, Sequoia, Sequoiadendron and the Tertiary fossil conifer Homalcoia. Arrangement of cones on branches differs from those of Athrotaxis, Metasequoia and Homalcoia and pollen lacks the long distal papillae of Sequoiaand Sequoiadendron. This combination of morphological features is unlike that found in any living or fossil taxodiaceous Cupressaceae.


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1 - University of Alberta, Department of Biological Sciences, Biological Sciences Centre, Cw 405, Edmonton, Alberta, T6G 2E9, Canada

Keywords:
Cupressaceae
pollen
Cretaceous
taxodiaceous
cone.

Presentation Type: Oral Paper
Session: 17-2
Location: 404/Hilton
Date: Monday, August 15th, 2005
Time: 1:45 PM
Abstract ID:339


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