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Jurassic flower from China (free pdf) + new Batropetes species (lepospondyl) from Permian of Germany
A couple of new non-dino papers that may be of interest:
Zhong-Jian Liu & Xin Wang (2015)
A perfect flower from the Jurassic of China.
Historical Biology (advance online publication)
Flower, enclosed ovule and tetrasporangiate anther are three major
characters distinguishing angiosperms from other seed plants.
Morphologically, typical flowers are characterised by an organisation
with gynoecium and androecium surrounded by corolla and calyx.
Theoretically, flowers are derived from their counterparts in ancient
ancestral gymnosperms. However, as for when, how and from which
groups, there is no consensus among botanists yet. Although
angiosperm-like pollen and angiosperms have been claimed in the
Triassic and Jurassic, typical flowers with the aforesaid three key
characters are still missing in the pre-Cretaceous age, making many
interpretations of flower evolution tentative. Thus searching for
flower in the pre-Cretaceous has been a tantalising task for
palaeobotanists for a long time. Here, we report a typical flower,
Euanthus panii gen. et sp. nov., from the Middle–Late Jurassic of
Liaoning, China. Euanthus has sepals, petals, androecium with
tetrasporangiate dithecate anthers and gynoecium with enclosed ovules,
organised just like in perfect flowers of extant angiosperms. The
discovery of Euanthus implies that typical angiosperm flowers have
already been in place in the Jurassic, and provides a new insight
unavailable otherwise for the evolution of flowers.
Sabine Glienke (2015)
Two new species of the genus Batropetes (Tetrapoda, Lepospondyli) from
the Central European Rotliegend (basal Permian) in Germany.
Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology (advance online publication)
Two new species of Batropetes are described from the Lower Rotliegend
of the Saar-Nahe Basin in western Germany. Batropetes palatinus, sp.
nov., is characterized by a narrow, anteriorly elongated prefrontal, a
slender postfrontal without an anterolateral process, a trapezoid
postorbital, and a large quadrate in exterior view. Batropetes
appelensis, sp. nov., is characterized by a high angular, ‘Z’-shaped
angular-dentary suture, no indentation between stem and plate of
interclavicle, and scapulocoracoid without ossified coracoid. The
genus Batropetes is characterized by an average length of almost 8 cm,
a short trunk with 17 or 19 presacrals depending on the species, large
orbit with a raised rim, a large pineal foramen, three pits on the
frontal, tricuspid teeth, a toothless palate, four short robust limbs,
and completely ossified pectoral and pelvic girdles (except for the
coracoids of B. appelensis and B. fritschi). Batropetes belongs to the
Brachystelechidae, together with Carrolla and Quasicaecilia. Cladistic
analysis reveals for the monophyletic genus Batropetes that B.
appelensis forms a sister group to the remaining three species in the
genus, and B. niederkirchensis is the sister group to B. palatinus and
B. fritschi. The functional interpretation of the appendicular
skeleton and the skull morphology suggest that all Batropetes species
were terrestrial, living near the lakes in which they were preserved.
They appear to have fed on small arthropods in the leaf litter or in
the upper zone of the soil.
SUPPLEMENTAL DATA—Supplemental materials are available for this
article for free at www.tandfonline.com/UJVP