Journal of Plant Research

, Volume 128, Issue 3, pp 445–457 | Cite as

Fertile structures with in situ spores of a dipterid fern from the Triassic in southern China

  • Yongdong WangEmail author
  • Liqin Li
  • Gaëtan Guignard
  • David L. Dilcher
  • Xiaoping Xie
  • Ning Tian
  • Ning Zhou
  • Yan Wang
Regular Paper


Clathropteris was a typical dipterid fern with well documented fossil record and was widely dispersed during the Mesozoic; however, our knowledge of fertile structures including in situ spores for this genus is still very limited. Here we report well-preserved compression specimens of Clathropteris obovata Oishi from the Late Triassic of Guangyuan, Sichuan Province, China. The specimens show round to oval and exindusiate sori, vertical to oblique annuli in sporangia, and in situ trilete spores with verrucate and baculate sculptures, which are comparable to dispersed spore genera of Converrucosisporites and Conbaculatisporites. Comparisons of relevant fossil taxa suggest that specimens of C. obovata from Triassic of China provide for the first time in Asia the detailed fertile structures with in situ spore characters of dipterid fossil Clathropteris. Unlike living Dipteris, Mesozoic fossils of Dipteridaceae show a high diversity and a range of complex morphology of in situ spores, thus are significant for the evolutionary links between Dipteridaceae and other related fern clade, including Gleicheniaceae and Matoniaceae of the Gleicheniales.


Dipteridaceae Clathropteris Sporangia In situ spores Late Triassic Sichuan China 



We thank Y. Q. Mao (NIGPAS, Nanjing), Frédéric Pautz (Director, Botanical Garden of Lyon), Frédéric Danet (Curator of Lyon Herbarium) (LYJB) and Katherine Dilcher for helpful assistances. We also acknowledge Dr. Mike Pole for helpful suggestion and constructive comments of the manuscript. This study was jointly supported by the State Key Basic Research Program of China (2012CB822003), National Natural Sciences Foundation of China (NSFC 41272010, 40972008 and 40472004), the Knowledge Innovation Project of CAS (KZCX-2-YW-154), and the Team Program from the Chinese Academy of Sciences.


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Copyright information

© The Botanical Society of Japan and Springer Japan 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yongdong Wang
    • 1
    • 3
    Email author
  • Liqin Li
    • 1
    • 8
  • Gaëtan Guignard
    • 2
  • David L. Dilcher
    • 4
    • 5
  • Xiaoping Xie
    • 6
  • Ning Tian
    • 5
  • Ning Zhou
    • 1
    • 8
  • Yan Wang
    • 7
  1. 1.Nanjing Institute of Geology and PalaeontologyChinese Academy of SciencesNanjingChina
  2. 2.UMR CNRS 5276 Laboratoire de Géologie de Lyon, Département de BiologieUniversité Claude Bernard Lyon 1, Herbiers de l’Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1Villeurbanne CedexFrance
  3. 3.Key Laboratory of Economic Stratigraphy and PalaeogeographyChinese Academy of SciencesNanjingChina
  4. 4.Department of GeologyIndiana UniversityBloomingtonUSA
  5. 5.College of PalaeontologyShenyang Normal UniversityShenyangChina
  6. 6.College of Geography and TourismQufu Normal UniversityRizhaoChina
  7. 7.School of Geoscience and TechnologySouthwest Petroleum UniversityChengduChina
  8. 8.University of Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina

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