A new find of the fossil Cyclosorus from the Eocene of South China and its paleoclimatic implication


The thelypteroid ferns are widely distributed across tropical regions around the world, but information about their fossil representatives is scarce. A new species, Cyclosorus scutum Naugolnykh, Wang, Han et Jin was discovered from the Eocene Changchang Formation of Hainan Island, South China, and is described on the basis of sterile and fertile leaves, sori, sporangia and spores preserved in situ. Discovery of this new species clearly shows that climatic conditions of that time in this area were humid, i.e. warm and wet.

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This study was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 41210001), the National Basic Research Program of China (973 Program) (Grant No. 2012CB822003), the State Key Laboratory of Palaeobiology and Stratigraphy (Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology, CAS) (Grant No. 123110), the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (Grant No. 12lgjc04), the Key Project of Sun Yat-sen University for inviting foreign teachers, and by the State Program for Supporting Competitive Growth of Kazan Federal University among World’s Leading Scientific—Educational Centers and the Russian Foundation for Basic Research. The authors are grateful to Prof. Robert A. Spicer (The Open University, UK) for correcting the English of the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Jian-Hua Jin.

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Naugolnykh, S.V., Wang, L., Han, M. et al. A new find of the fossil Cyclosorus from the Eocene of South China and its paleoclimatic implication. J Plant Res 129, 3–12 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10265-015-0765-0

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  • Cyclosorus
  • Eocene
  • Ferns
  • Paleoclimate
  • South China
  • Thelypteridaceae