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Abstract Detail

Paleobotanical Section

Woodcock, Deborah [1].

Characterizing extant and fossil wood assemblages.

Vessel diameter and density are standard measurements included in descriptions of wood structure, with averaged values often utilized in characterization of wood floras. Ring-porous taxa, which have complicated vessel patternings and size-distributions as compared to diffuse porous taxa, are generally left out of these averages even though they can be important or even dominant elements of a flora. A newly developed measurement and analysis approach provides a new way of characterizing vessel arrangement and diameter distribution in both ring- and diffuse-porous woods. Application of this technique to an Eocene wood assemblage from Peru that is largely tropical in character but has a ring-porous component shows that: 1) some of the ring-porous taxa represented among the fossils are similar to high-latitude ring-porous woods while others have anatomical characteristics that may be restricted to the tropics and 2) aspects of vessel diameter-distribution and patterning are helpful in characterizing fossil wood floras and drawing inferences about climate.

Broader Impacts:
This research is a contribution to development of fossil wood as a proxy indicator of past climates.

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1 - Clark University, Marsh Institute, 610 Main St, Hudson , MA, 01610, USA

fossil wood
vessel arrangement
vessel size distribution

Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Sections
Session: 58
Location: 556A/Convention Center
Date: Wednesday, August 4th, 2010
Time: 2:30 PM
Number: 58005
Abstract ID:235

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