Triassic and Early Jurassic fossil floras from North Victoria Land, Antarctica: palaeobiology, paleoecology and stratigraphy
Professor Dr. Hans Kerp
Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster
Institut für Geologie und Paläontologie
Forschungsstelle für Paläobotanik
While other regions of the Antarctic have yielded reasonably well-preserved Mesozoic plant fossil deposits, hardly any fossil floras were known from coeval strata of North Victoria Land. During the IXth German Antarctic North Victoria Land Expedition plant material from a dozen newly discovered Triassic and Jurassic fossil localities has been collected and is currently studied. These floras are of special interest, because compressions yield excellently preserved cuticles and also anatomically preserved material has been found. Particularly cuticle-bearing compression floras are extremely rare in the Antarctic. The aims of this project are: (1) a systematic study of the newly discovered floras, based on cuticles and anatomically preserved material, (2) palaeoecological and -climatological interpretations of these floras, and (3) the establishment of a more detailed biostratigraphic framework for the Mesozoic sedimentary sequence in the Transantarctic Mountains. This study will thus contribute to a better understanding of the palaeoenvironmental changes in East Antarctica during the earliest phase of the break-up of Pangea.
term from 2007 to 2011