SeedPlants213-page21

SeedPlants213-page21 - found in Cretaceous deposits from 70...

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Seed-Dispersing Plants - 21 Anthophyte Ancestry The oldest seed plant fossils that indicate the presence of flowers may be 136 million years old, with tantalizing fossil fragments, but the earliest probable flowering plants are thought to have a scanty fossil record. A major breakthrough in the fossil anthophyte record was the recovery in the late 1990's of Archeafructus , dated to about 125 million years old. was recovered from semi-aquatic beds in northern China. Its flowers were small and not showy. Prior to this time, most paleobotanists were searching for evidence of Magnolia-type flowers, which were long believed to be the primitive flower type among our living flowering plants. Many very tiny flower fossils have now been
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Unformatted text preview: found in Cretaceous deposits from 70 120 million years old. Possible Early Flower reconstruction Fossil DNA analysis of our more "primitive" extant flowering plants is clear, and forms the basis of the current classification within the Anthophyta. Probably 99% of the flowering plants today share flower genes with Amborella, a single genus, found in New Caledonia, in the South Pacific. Amborella is considered to be the oldest of the living angiosperms. The fairly common water lilies, and the less well-known star anise are the next oldest extant angiosperms, followed by the Magnolias, which are more abundant with several related orders....
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