237 pages, 104 illustrations, 2 tables
An Introduction to Plant Fossils provides an excellent practical introduction to the study of plant fossils, and is written for those who have had little previous experience of this type of palaeontology. The text summarises the groups of plants occurring as fossils and describes how best to investigate them. It explains modern research techniques that reveal details of anatomical and reproductive characteristics, and the features for identifying commonly found plant fossils.
The approaches for interpreting these fossils are assessed, and An Introduction to Plant Fossils highlights how such methods are employed by palaeobotanists to increase our knowledge of plant evolution, palaeoecology, palaeogeography and stratigraphy. An Introduction to Plant Fossils discusses how the science of palaeobotany has developed over the last 300 years, with examples and illustrations from a global range of plant groups. It is valuable for students on introductory or intermediate courses in palaeobotany, palaeontology and plant evolution, and for amateurs looking for help in studying plant fossils.
2. Highlights of palaeobotanical study
3. Studying plant fossils
4. Early land plants
8. Early Gymnosperms
9. Modern Gymnosperms
11. The history of land vegetation
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Christopher J. Cleal is Head of Vegetation History Section at the National Museum of Wales. He obtained his BSc and PhD from the University of Sheffield, and has studied Palaeozoic palaeobotany and stratigraphy for over 35 years, with special reference to the link between vegetation and climate change. He has worked at the University of Sheffield, the Museum of the Saarbrucken Mining School in Germany, the Nature Conservancy Council, and the National Museum of Wales. He is a Fellow of the Geological Society, London, and the Linnean Society, London, a former Council Member of the Palaeontological Association, and Secretary of the British Institute for Geological Conservation. He has published an extensive list of books, and over 100 papers in academic journals, dealing with palaeobotany, stratigraphy and geoconservation. He was on the Editorial Board of the journal Palaeontology, has been co-editor of the biennial Bibliography of European Palaeobotany and Palynology for the last 10 years, and is currently an editor of Systematic Palaeontology.
Barry A. Thomas holds an honorary chair at Aberystwyth University, Wales. He obtained his B.Sc. from the University of Sheffield, and his Ph.D. and D.Sc. from the University of Reading. He has studied Palaeozoic palaeobotany and stratigraphy for over 45 years, with special reference to Carboniferous floras and pteridophytes. He was Head of the Life Sciences Department and Dean of Science at Goldsmiths' College, London; Keeper of the Botany Department, National Museum, Wales; and Professor in the Geography Department, Lampeter. He is a Fellow of the Linnean Society, London, member of the Palaeontological Association, Treasurer of the British Institute for Geological Conservation, and past President of the British Pteridological Society. He has published numerous books and over 120 papers in academic journals, dealing with pteridophytes, palaeobotany, stratigraphy and geoconservation. He started the biennial Bibliography of European Palaeobotany and Palynology, and is currently an editor of Law Science and Policy.