Plant systematics and differentiation of species over Trans-Beringian land connections including a newly recognized cupressaceous conifer Ditaxocladus Guo & Sun


Authors: Krassilov VA, Kodrul TM, Maslova NP

Published in: Bulletin of Geosciences, volume 85, issue 1; pages: 95 - 110; Received 24 May 2009; Accepted in revised form 5 October 2009; Online 8 January 2010

Keywords: trans-Beringian migrations, speciation, conifers, angiosperms, aquatic plants, climate change, Cretaceous, Paleocene,

full text (PDF, 5.27 MB)

Export to RIS



Rich paleobotanical localities of eastern Asia and western North America provide ample opportunities for documentation and analysis of trans-Beringian migration and differentiation. Species-level comparisons are made for cupressaceous conifers Mesocyparisand Ditaxocladus, as well as for the platanoid genera Macginitiea and Platimeliphyllum. Asiatic and American species (forms) of these genera are interpreted as representing successive speciation events en route from northeastern Asia to North America (Mesocyparis rosanoviiM. beringianaM. borealis and Platimeliphyllum valentiniiP. palanensePlatimeliphyllum sp. from Fushun and Clarno) or, alternatively, a divergent speciation over the trans-Beringian ranges, as in Ditaxocladus. A new species of cupressaceous conifer from the Paleocene of Amur Province is recognized: Ditaxocladus kivdensis sp. nov. The dominant latest Cretaceous–Paleocene group of trochodendrocarpoids (Trochodendroides type leaves,Trochodendrocarpus, Joffrea and Alasia reproductive structures) shows a generic-level differentiation across Beringia attesting to periodic rather than permanent floristic connections. The aquatic/semiaquatic congeners had appeared on both sides of the bridge with the rise of floating plant biomass in the mid-Cretaceous, then synchronously entering the Late Cretaceous (Quereuxia) and terminal Cretaceous (Limnobiophyllum, Cobbania) stages. The trans-Beringian continuity of aquatic vegetation might have been sustained by dinosaur migrations. Cobbania was lost to the end-Cretaceous extinction, but trochodendrocarpoids culminated at the boundary attesting to a widespread temperization of global climates.


Abramova, L.N. 1983. Late Cretaceous flora of Khatanga River Basin, 118-127. In Bondarev, V.I. (ed) Paleontological basis of the Paleozoic and Mezocoic deposits differentiation of the USSR Arctic regions. Sevmorgeo, Leningrad. [in Russian]

Akhmetiev, M.A., Kezina, T.V., Kodrul, T.M.&Manchester, S.R. 2002. Stratigraphy and flora of the Cretaceous- Paleogene boundary layers in the southeast part of the Zeya-Bureya sedimentary basin, 275-315. In Akhmetiev, M.A., Doludenko, M.P., Herman, A.B. & Ignatiev, I.A. (eds) Special volume dedicated to the memory of the Corresponding member of the USSR Academy of Sciences, Professor Vsevolod Andreevich Vakhrameev (to the 90th anniversary of his birth). GEOS, Moscow. [in Russian].

Bell, W.A. 1949. Uppermost Cretaceous and Paleocene floras of western Alberta. Bulletin of the Geological Survey of Canada 13, 1-231.

Berry, E.W. 1911. Systematic paleontology, Lower Cretaceous: fossil plants. Angiospermae, 214- 508. In Clark, W.B. (ed.) Lower Cretaceous. Maryland Geological Survey, Baltimore, Maryland.

Berry, E.W. 1935.Apreliminary contribution to the floras of the Whitemud and Ravenscrag formations. Geological Survey of Canada, Department of Mines, Memoir 182, 1-107.

Brown, R.W. 1939. Fossil leaves, fruits and seeds of Cercidiphyllum. Journal of Paleontology 13, 485-499.

Brown, R.W. 1962. Paleocene flora of the Rocky Mountains and Great Plains. U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 375, 1-119.

Budantsev, L.Y. 1996. The new species of Macginitiea (Platanaceae) from the Eocene of western Kamchatka. Botanical Journal 81(9), 67-73 [in Russian].

Bugdaeva, E.V.,Markevich, V.S., Sorokin, A.P. & Bolotsky, Y.L. 2001. Chapter 2. Stratigraphy, 25-43. In Bugdaeva, E.V. (ed.) Flora and dinosaurs at the Cretaceous- Paleogene boundary of the Zeya-Bureya Basin. Dalnauka, Vladivostok [in Russian].

Bugdaeva, E.V., Volynets, Y.B., Golozubov, V.V., Markevich, V.S.&Amelchenko, G.L. 2006. Flora and geological events of the Mid-Cretaceous time (Alchan Basin, Ptimorye). 205 pp. Dalnauka, Vladivostok.

Chandrasekharam, A. 1974. Megafossil flora from the Genesee locality, Alberta, Canada. Palaeontographica, Abteilung B 147, 1-47.

Crane, P.R., Manchester, S.R. & Dilcher, D.L. 1991. Reproductive and vegetative structure of Nordenskioldia (Trochodendraceae), a vesselless dicotyledon from the early Tertiary of the Northern Hemisphere. American Journal of Botany 78, 1311-1334.View article

Crane, P.R. & Stockey, R.A. 1985. Growth and reproductive biology of Joffrea speirsii gen. et sp. nov., a Cercidiphyllumlike plant from the Late Paleocene of Alberta, Canada. Canadian Journal of Botany 63(2), 340-364.View article

Dorf, E. 1942. Upper Cretaceous floras of the Rocky Mountain region. II. Flora of the Lance Formation at its type locality, Niobrara County, Wyoming. Carnegie Institution of Washington Publication 508, 83-168.

Endress, P.K. 1993. Trochodendraceae, 599-602. In Kubitzki, K., Rohwer, J.G.&Bittrich, V. (eds) The families and genera of vascular plants. Vol. 2. Springer, Berlin

Farjon, A. 2005. A monograph of Cupressaceae and Sciadopitys. 643 pp. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

Golovneva, L.B. 1987. A new species of the genus Haemanthophyllum from the Rarytkin series of Koryak Upland. Botanical Journal 72, 1127-1131. [in Russian]

Golovneva, L.B. 1994. Maastrichtian - Danian floras of the Koryak Upland. 148 pp. Botanical Institute RAS, St. Petersburg.

Golovneva, L.B. 1997. Morphology, systematics and distribution of the genus Haemanthophyllum in the Paleogene floras of the Northern Hemisphere. Paleontological Journal 31, 197-207.

Golovneva, L.B. 2000. Aquatic plant communities at the Cretaceous- Palaeogene boundary in north-eastern Russia. Acta Palaeobotanica 40, 139-151.

Golovneva, L.B. 2005. Phytostratigraphy and evolution of the Albian-Campanian flora in the Siberian region, 177-197. In Arkadiev, V.V. & Prozorovsky, V.A. (eds) The Cretaceous system of Russia: the problems of stratigraphy and paleogeography. St. Petersburg State University, St. Petersburg. [in Russian]

Golovneva, L.B. 2006. Alasia, gen. nov. - male inflorescences, associated with Trochodendroides leaves (Cercidiphyllaceae). Botanical Journal 91(12), 1898-1906.

Golovneva, L.B & Krassilov, V.A. 2001. New genus of heterosporous ferns of the order Heroleandrales from the Lower Cretaceous of Kazakhstan. Paleontological Journal 3, 108-112. [in Russian]

Guo, S.-X., Sun, Z.-H., Li, H.-M. & Dou, Y.-W. 1984. Paleocene megafossil flora from Altai of Xinjiang. Bulletin of the Nanjing Institute of Geology&Palaeontology, 8, 119-146. [in Chinese]

Hickey, L.J. 2001. On the nomenclatural status of the morphogenera Quereuxia and Trapago. Taxon 50(4), 1119-1124.View article

Herman, A.B., Akhmetiev, M.A., Kodrul, T.M., Moiseeva, M.G. & Yakovleva, A.I. 2009. Flora development in Northeastern Asia and Northern Alaska during the Cretaceous-Paleogene transitional epoch. Stratigraphy and Geological Correlation 17(1), 79-97.View article

Hollick, A. & Jeffrey, E.C. 1909. Studies of Cretaceous remains from Kreischerville, New York. Memoirs of the New York Botanical Garden 3, 1-138.

Hsü, J. 1983. Late Cretaceous and Cenozoic vegetation in China, emphasizing their connection with North America. Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden 70, 490-508.View article

Hueber, F.M. & Watson, J. 1988. The unusual Upper Cretaceous conifer Androvettia from eastern U.S.A. Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society 98, 117-133.View article

Johnson, K.R. 1985. The Puercan flora and paleoenvironments of the Hunt Creek Sandstone Member of the Fort Union Formation, northern Bighorn Basin, Park County, Wyoming and Carbon County, Montana. 204 pp. Master thesis, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, USA.

Johnson, K.R. 2002. Megaflora of the Hell Creek and lower Fort Union formations in the western Dakotas: vegetational response to climate change, the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary event, and rapid marine transgression. Geological Society of America Special Paper 361, 329-391.

Knowlton, F.H. 1917. Flora of the Fruitland and Kirtland formations. U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 98S, 327-355.

Kodrul, T.M.&Maslova, N.P. 2007. A new species of the genus Platimeliphyllum N. Maslova from the Paleocene of the Amur Region, Russia. Paleontological Journal 41(11), 1-5.View article

Kodrul, T.M., Tekleva, M. & Krassilov, V.A. 2006. A new conifer species, Mesocyparis rosanovii sp. nov. (Cupressaceae, Coniferales), and trans-Beringian floristic connections. Paleontological Journal 40(3), 328-338.View article

Krassilov, V.A. 1973. Cuticular structures of Cretaceous angiosperms from the Far East of the USSR. Palaeontographica, Abteilung B 142, 105-116.

Krassilov, V.A. 1976. Tsagayan flora of Amur Province. 92 pp. Nauka, Moscow. [in Russian]

Krassilov, V.A. 1979. Cretaceous flora of Sakhalin. 182 pp. Nauka, Moscow. [in Russian]

Krassilov, V.A. 1981. Changes of Mezozoic vegetation and the extinction of dinosaurs. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 34, 207-224.View article

Krassilov, V.A. 1989. Vavilov´s species concept and evolution of variation. Evolutionary Theory 9, 37-44.

Krassilov, V.A. & Golovneva, L.B. 1999. A new heterosporous plant from the Cretaceous of West Siberia. Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology 105, 75-84.View article

Krassilov, V.A. & Kodrul, T.M. 2008. In situ pollen of Alasia, a supposed staminate inflorescence of Trochodendroides plant. Acta Musei Nationalis Pragae, Series B 64(2-4), 115-124.

Krassilov, V.A., Lewy, Z., Nevo, E. & Silantieva, N. 2005. Turonian flora of Southern Negev, Israel. 252 pp. Pensoft, Sophia.

Krassilov, V.A. & Makulbekov, N.M. 1995. Maastrichtian aquatic plants from Mongolia. Paleontological Journal 29(2), 119-140.

Kryshtofovich, A.N. 1935. New data on Cretaceous flora of North America in connection with floras of Far East. Year-book of All-Russian Paleontological Society 10, 89-103. [in Russian]

Kryshtofovich, A.N. & Baikovskaya, T.N. 1966. Upper Cretaceous Tsagayan flora of Amur Province, 184-320. In Kryshtofovich, A.N. Selected works Vol. 3. Nauka, Moscow. [in Russian]

Kvaček, Z. 1995. Limnobiophyllum Krassilov - a fossil link between the Araceae and the Lemnaceae. Aquatic Botany 50, 49-61.View article

Kvaček, Z. 2008. The role of types in palaeobotanical nomenclature. Acta Musei nationalis Pragae, Series B 64(2-4), 89-96.

Kvaček, Z., Manchester, S.R. & Schorn, H.E. 2000. Cone, seeds and foliage of Tetraclinis salicornioides (Cupressaceae) from the Oligocene and Miocene of western North America: a geographic extension of the European Tertiary species. International Journal of Plant Sciences 161, 331-344.View article

Lebedev, E.L. 1987. Stratigraphy and age of Okhotsk-Chukotka volcanic belt. 176 pp. Nauka, Moscow. [in Russian]

Manchester, S.R. 1986. Vegetative and reproductive morphology of an extinct plane tree (Platanaceae) from the Eocene of western North America. Botanical Gazette 14(2), 200-226.View article

Manchester, S.R. 1999. Biogeographical relationships of North American Tertiary floras. Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden 86(2), 472-522.View article

Manchester, S.R., Chen, Z.-D., Lu, A.-M. & Uemura, K. 2009. Eastern Asian endemic seed plant genera and their paleogeographic history throughout the Northern Hemisphere. Journal of Systematics and Evolution 47(1), 1-42.View article

Markevich, V.S., Golovneva, L.B. & Bugdaeva, E.V. 2005. Stratigraphy and flora of the Kundur Formation (Upper Cretaceous, Amur Region), 160-176. In Arkadiev, V.V. & Prozorovsky, V.A. (eds) The Cretaceous system of Russia: the problems of stratigraphy and paleogeography. St. Petersburg State University, St. Petersburg. [in Russian]

Maslova, N.P. 2002. A new plant of the family Platanaceae from the Early Paleogene reconstructed on the basis of leaves and inflorescences. Paleontological Journal 36(2), 207-218.

Maslova, N.P. 2003. Extinct and extant Platanaceae and Hamamelidaceae: morphology, systematics, and phylogeny. Paleontological Journal 37 (Suppl. 5), 467-590.

McIver, E.E. 1992. Fossil Fokienia (Cupressaceae) from the Paleocene of Alberta, Canada. Canadian Journal of Botany 70(4), 742-749.

McIver, E.E & Aulenback, K.R. 1994. Morphology and relationships of Mesocyparis umbonata sp. nov.: fossil Cupressaceae from the Late Cretaceous of Alberta, Canada. Canadian Journal of Botany 72, 273-295.View article

McIver, E.E&Basinger, J.F. 1987. Mesocyparis borealis gen. et sp. nov.: fossil Cupressaceae from the Early Tertiary of Saskatchewan, Canada. Canadian Journal of Botany 65, 2338-2351.View article

McIver, E.E & Basinger, J.F. 1990. Fossil seed cones of Fokienia (Cupressaceae) from the Paleocene Ravenscrag Formation, Saskatchewan, Canada. Canadian Journal of Botany 68(7), 1609-1618.

Peppe, D.J., Erickson, J.M.&Hickey, L.J. 2007. Fossil leaf species from the Fox Hills Formation (Upper Cretaceous: North Dakota, USA) and their paleogeographic significance. Journal of Paleontology 81(3), 550-567.View article

Pigg, K.B. & Stockey, R.A. 1991. Platanaceous plants from the Paleocene of Alberta, Canada. Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology 70(1/2), 125-146.View article

Riley, M.G. & Stockey, R.A. 2004. Cardstonia tolmanii gen. et sp. nov. (Limnocharitaceae) from the Upper Cretaceous of Alberta, Canada. International Journal of Plant Sciences 165, 897-916.View article

Romanova, E.V. 1975. Representatives of Cupressaceae family from the Upper Cretaceous deposits of Mount Juvankara (Zaissan depression). Botanical Journal 60, 1191-1194. [in Russian]

Samylina, V.A. 1968. Early Cretaceous angiosperms of the Soviet Union based on leaf and fruit remains. Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society 61, 207- 218.View article

Samylina, V.A. 1988. Arkagala stratoflora of North East of Asia. 132 pp. Nauka, Leningrad. [in Russian]

Stockey, R.A. 2006. The fossil record of basal monocots, 91-106. In Columbus, J.T., Friar, E.A., Porter, J.M., Prince, L.M. & Simpson, M.G. (eds) Monocots: Comparative Biology and Evolution (excluding Poales). Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden, Claremont.

Stockey, R.A., Hoffman, G.L.&Rothwell, G.W. 1997. The fossil monocot Limnobiophyllum scutatum: Resolving the phylogeny of Lemnaceae. American Journal of Botany 84, 355-368.View article

Stockey, R.A. & Rothwell, G.W. 1997. The aquatic angiosperm Trapago angulata from the Upper Cretaceous (Maastrichtian) St. Mary River Formation of southern Alberta. International Journal of Plant Sciences 158, 83-94.View article

Stockey, R.A., Rothwell, G.W. & Johnson, K.R. 2007. Cobbania corrugata gen. et comb. nov. (Araceae): a floating aquatic monocot from the Upper Cretaceous of western North America. American Journal of Botany 94, 609-624.View article

Sun, G., Akhmetiev, M., Golovneva, L., Bugdaeva, E., Quan, C.,Kodrul, T.,Nishida, H., Sun, Y., Sun, C., Johnson, K. & Dilcher, D. 2007. Late Cretaceous plants from Jiayin along Heilongjiang River, Northeast China. Courier Forschungsinstitut Senckenberg 258, 75-83.

Sveshnikova, I.N. 1967 Fossil conifers of the Viljui syneclise. Transactions BIN AS USSR, series 8 Palaeobotany 6, 177-204. [in Russian]

Takhtajan, A.L. 1991. Evolutionary trends in flowering plants. 241 pp. Columbia University Press, New York.

Tiffney, B.H. 1985. Perspectives on the origin of the floristic similarity between eastern Asia and eastern North America. Journal of the Arnold Arboretum 66, 73-94.

Tiffney, B.H. & Manchester, S.R. 2001. The use of geological and paleontological evidence in evaluating plant phylogeographic hypotheses in the northern hemisphere Tertiary. International Journal of Plant Sciences 162, 3-17.View article

Upchurch, G.R., Crane, P.R. & Drinnan, A.N. 1994. The megaflora from the Quantico locality (upper Albian), Lower Cretaceous Potomac Group of Virginia. Virginia Museum of Natural History, Memoir 4, 1-57.

Wolfe, J.A. 1975. Some aspects of plant geography of the Northern Hemisphere during the Late Cretaceous and Tertiary Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden 62, 264-279.View article

Wolfe, J.A. & Wehr, W. 1987. Middle Eocene dicotyledonous plants from Republic, northeastern Washington. United States Geological Survey Bulletin 1597, 1-25.