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Abstract Detail

Celebrating More Than Three Decades of Research in Nymphaeales: A Colloquium Honoring Ed Schneider

Devore, Melanie L. [1], Pigg, Kathleen B. [2].

Ed Schneider's legacy: On Integrating Morphology, Anatomy, and Pollination Ecology of Nymphaeales with the fossil record.

Anatomical and morphological data have long been the currency linking extant plant lineages with their relatives in deep time. When Edward Schneider published his first paper on the floral morphology of Nymphaeaceae in 1976, the US was celebrating the bicentennial and the genus Nelumbo had not yet declared its independence from the family, let alone, the order. Nelumbo seceded from the Nymphaeaceae, and was declared its own family within Proteales in 1989. Ten years later the Nymphaeales were identified as one of the five basal angiosperm lineages (the "N" in ANITA) within the angiosperm phylogeny. Twenty-three years later, while Schneider and Sherwin Carlquist focused on vessel anatomy, Schneider's earlier work on floral anatomy and morphology experienced a renaissance. In paleobotany, the fossil record of Nymphaeales, quietly plodding along since the 1960s, immediately also became of broader interest. Given the complex floral morphology of today's Nymphaeales, its position as a basal clade branching immediately after Amborella is intriguing. Clearly, the Nymphaeales today are the product of anagenic evolution from members which were once parts of a terrestrial lineage. However the first and oldest taxa only provide part of the story. There have been many shifts in both the morphology and ecological relationships behind the radiation of the Nymphaeales crown lineage in the Tertiary. To date, the Tertiary fossil record offers somewhat limited information. After several intriguing Cretaceous reproductive and vegetative fossils of presumed nymphaealean affinity, the Tertiary fossil record is based primarily on seeds. The order was more diverse than it is today and is represented by seeds with morphologies intermediate between extant genera. These include several genera from the Russian and Japanese Neogene as well as remains from the lower Eocene London Clay, Allenbya from the Princeton Chert, and Susiea from the Paleocene Almont flora. One extant genus, Nuphar, has been recognized from fossil remains, with at least 13 extinct species described. The earliest is from the Paleocene Almont flora of North Dakota and is quite similar to N. wutuensis seeds of China. A new species of Nuphar from the late early Eocene Republic Flora of Washington includes not only seeds but fruit remains, a stigmatic disc, seed masses, and rhizomes with the distinctive clustered root attachments of the genus. The new occurrence provides a means to understand a nymphaeacean fossil as a whole plant and demonstrates considerable similarities with the morphology and seed dispersal seen in the extant species.

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1 - Dept Of Biology & Env. Science, GC & SU Campus Box 81, Milledgeville, GA, 31061-0001, USA
2 - Arizona State University, School Of Life Sciences Faculty & Admin, Box 874501, Tempe, AZ, 85287-4501, USA

floral morphology
aquatic plant
ANITA grade.

Presentation Type: Colloquium Presentations
Session: C3
Location: Salon 12/The Shaw Conference Centre
Date: Tuesday, July 28th, 2015
Time: 9:15 AM
Number: C3003
Abstract ID:1283
Candidate for Awards:None

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