MUSEO ARGENTINO DE CIENCIAS NATURALES "BERNARDINO RIVADAVIA"
Unidad Ejecutora - UE
Fossil pollen grains of Asteraceae from the Miocene of Patagonia: Nassauviinae affinity
BARREDA, V.; PALAZZESI, L.; TELLERÍA, M.C.
REVIEW OF PALAEOBOTANY AND PALYNOLOGY
Año: 2008 vol. 151 p. 51 - 51
Fossil pollen grains with morphological features unique in the subtribe Nassauviinae (tribe Mutisieae, Asteraceae) occur in Miocene marine deposits of eastern Patagonia, southern South America. A new morphogenus and two morphospecies are proposed to assemble fossil pollen grains characterized by having a complex bilayered exine structure with delicate columellae, separated by an internal tectum. Subprolate specimens with Trixis exine type (ectosexine thinner than endosexine, straight internal tectum) are referred to Huanilipollis cabrerae. This species is similar to pollen of recent Holocheilus, Jungia, and Proustia. Suboblate specimens with Oxyphyllum exine type (ectosexine and endosexine equally thick, zigzag internal tectum) are referred to Huanilipollis criscii. This species is similar to pollen of recent Triptilion. The spore/pollen sequences in which Nassauviinae pollen types occur suggest a wide range of vegetation types varying from forest dominated during the Early Miocene (Chenque Formation) to virtually xerophytic ones during the Late Miocene (Puerto Madryn Formation). The subtribe Nassauviinae comprises 25 genera and ca. 320 species of vines, shrubs and low trees endemic to America with a wide range of ecological preferences; the nearest living relatives of the fossil types being mostly confined to humid landscapes. The unusual occurrence of these groups during the arid characterized Late Miocene time could be attributed to the complex interplay of the mountain uplift and global circulation patterns. These forcing factors would have created a mosaic of different habitats with both patches of forest and dry-adapted species developing in relatively small regions. This is the first fossil record of Nassauviinae and confirms that this subtribe of Asteraceae was already differentiated in the Miocene.