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Palaeobotanical investigation of a Cenomanian clay lens in Hucheloup Quarry, Maine-et-Loire, NW France: Taxonomic, stratigraphic and palaeoenvironmental implications

Abstract : A Cenomanian clay lens in Hucheloup Quarry (Maine-et-Loire, north-western France) has yielded 82 foliar compressions and impressions, of which 62 were identified at several taxonomic levels. The plants are ascribed to diverse Pinales (27%), ferns (27%), Ginkgoales (26%), angiosperms (19%) and Cycadales (1%). The most abundant species in the assemblage are Frenelopsis alata (K. Feistmantel) E. Knobloch emend. J. Kvaček (Pinales) and Eretmophyllum obtusum (Velenovský) J. Kvaček (syn. E. andegavense Pons, Bourreau et Broutin) (Ginkgoales). Wood fragments, along with very well-preserved cuticles, have also been recovered and identified. The specimens are usually very fragmentary, indicating that they had been transported over a significant distance before deposition. The Hucheloup clay was probably deposited in a brackish lagoon or in the lower part of an estuary, possibly in an abandoned channel or on a sandbar. The allochthonous flora represents at least two plant communities that developed in a subtropical–tropical climate, and along a salinity gradient in the vicinity of a fluvial network. Use of the fossil-genus Eretmophyllum Thomas emend. Harris in Harris et al. is considered to be the correct choice for ginkgoalean leaves within European Cenomanian deposits; the genus Nehvizdya Hluštík is regarded as a junior synonym. The clay lens has also yielded a palynological assemblage. Although lacking unequivocal indicators of this age and including some taxa that are more typical of older rocks, the composition of the associated, very small megaspore assemblage recovered is consistent with a Cenomanian determination.
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Submitted on : Friday, November 24, 2017 - 1:58:36 PM
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Rolf Fleury, France Polette, David J. Batten, Matthieu Durand, Jean-David Moreau, et al.. Palaeobotanical investigation of a Cenomanian clay lens in Hucheloup Quarry, Maine-et-Loire, NW France: Taxonomic, stratigraphic and palaeoenvironmental implications. Annales de Paléontologie, Elsevier Masson, 2017, 103 (4), pp.235-250. ⟨10.1016/j.annpal.2017.10.003⟩. ⟨insu-01647571⟩

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