01/02/2020 13:08

New paper in TAXON describes the oldest known carrot and the first evidence of Insular Woodiness

Tracing insular woodiness in giant Daucus (s.l.) fruit fossils from the Early Pleistocene of Madeira Island (Portugal)

Link: onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/tax.12175

Abstract: Plants on oceanic islands can evolve insular syndromes such as secondary woodiness, a generalized trend found in island floras worldwide. This phenomenon occurs through evolution in situ. It is triggered by ecological and physiological stimuli that transform herbaceous annuals into woody perennials. However, well-dated and informative fossils that could help track and frame the evolution of this syndrome are lacking. Remarkably, in Madeira Island (Portugal), there are good examples of Apiaceae that evolved secondary woodiness, like the giant neoendemic Melanoselinum (≡ Daucus). Apiaceae has a very scarce fossil record, despite being a cosmopolitan family and an economically important crop. Here we describe the oldest Daucus s.l. fossil known to date and the first fossil evidence of a plant with insular woodiness. The fossils are preserved as mummified/compressed mericarps within 1.3-millionyear- old fluvio-lacustrine sediments of the Funchal unit, Upper Volcanic complex, near Porto da Cruz. We assign them to the extant neoendemic species Melanoselinum (≡ Daucus) decipiens. The mericarp morphology shows remarkable stasis since the Calabrian stage of the Early Pleistocene. Our results demonstrate that in the Madeiran Daucinae clade, insular woodiness developed at least 1.3 million years ago, indicating a coeval or earlier immigration toMadeira Island of a Daucus sp. Our results reinforce the role of palaeobotanical research in oceanic islands, supported by stratigraphy and geochronology studies, as a key element for the understanding of plant palaeobiogeography, ecology and evolution worldwide.We expect this contribution to shed light on the evolutionary origins of carrots, and related plant groups, an important element of human food, and to better comprehend the evolution of plant insular woodiness.

Keywords island syndromes; Macaronesia; Melanoselinum; neoendemic; palaeobotany; palaeocarpology

floras worldwide. This phenomenon occurs through evolution in situ. It is triggered by ecological and physiological stimuli that transform
herbaceous annuals into woody perennials. However, well-dated and informative fossils that could help track and frame the evolution
of this syndrome are lacking. Remarkably, in Madeira Island (Portugal), there are good examples of Apiaceae that evolved
secondary woodiness, like the giant neoendemic Melanoselinum (≡ Daucus). Apiaceae has a very scarce fossil record, despite being
a cosmopolitan family and an economically important crop. Here we describe the oldest Daucus s.l. fossil known to date and the first
fossil evidence of a plant with insular woodiness. The fossils are preserved as mummified/compressed mericarps within 1.3-millionyear-
old fluvio-lacustrine sediments of the Funchal unit, Upper Volcanic complex, near Porto da Cruz. We assign them to the extant
neoendemic species Melanoselinum (≡ Daucus) decipiens. The mericarp morphology shows remarkable stasis since the Calabrian stage
of the Early Pleistocene. Our results demonstrate that in the Madeiran Daucinae clade, insular woodiness developed at least 1.3 million
years ago, indicating a coeval or earlier immigration toMadeira Island of a Daucus sp. Our results reinforce the role of palaeobotanical
research in oceanic islands, supported by stratigraphy and geochronology studies, as a key element for the understanding of plant
palaeobiogeography, ecology and evolution worldwide.We expect this contribution to shed light on the evolutionary origins of carrots,
and related plant groups, an important element of human food, and to better comprehend the evolution of plant insular woodiness.
Keywords island syndromes; Macaronesia; Melanoselinum; neoendemic; palaeobotany; palaeocarpology

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01/02/2020 13:08

New paper in TAXON describes the oldest known carrot and the first evidence of Insular Woodiness

Tracing insular woodiness in giant Daucus (s.l.) fruit fossils from the Early Pleistocene of Madeira Island (Portugal) Link: onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/tax.12175 Abstract: Plants on oceanic islands can evolve insular syndromes such as secondary woodiness, a generalized trend...

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17/11/2019 17:37

New Paper dealing with charcoalified wood from Faial Island

  New paper is out: Góis-Marques, C.A., Rubiales, J., de Nascimento, L., Menezes de Sequeira, M., Fernández-Palacios, J.M., Madeira, J., 2020. Oceanic Island forests buried by Holocene (Meghalayan) explosive eruptions: palaeobiodiversity in pre-anthropic volcanic charcoal from Faial...

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20/09/2019 14:46

New paper: Nomenclature and Typification of Names in the Ibero–North African Andryala arenaria (Asteraceae) and Taxonomic Implications

A new paper was published by our group, by Zita Ferreira, Inés Álvarez and Miguel Menezes de Sequeira, available here: novon.mobot.org/index.php/novon/article/view/297 Title: Nomenclature and Typification of Names in the Ibero–North African Andryala arenaria (Asteraceae) and Taxonomic...

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27/08/2019 12:08

New paper: The loss of a unique palaeobotanical site in Terceira Island within the Azores UNESCO Global Geopark (Portugal)

Available here: link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s12371-019-00401-1 or rdcu.be/bPbkl Reference: Góis-Marques, C.A., Elias, R.B., Steinbauer, M.J., de Nascimento, L., Fernández-Palacios, J.M., Menezes de Sequeira, M. & Madeira, J. 2019. The loss of a unique...

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21/02/2019 12:51

New Paper published: Eurya stigmosa (Theaceae), a new and extinct record for the Calabrian stage of Madeira Island (Portugal): 40Ar/39Ar dating, palaeoecological and oceanic island palaeobiogeographical implications.

A new paper describing a new and extinct Theaceae for Madeira Island was recently published in the journal Quaternary Science Review. You can check it out in: www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0277379118309284 This discovery was also reported portuguese...

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18/08/2018 09:22

FloraMac2018 congress, Funchal, Madeira Island (Portugal)

Please visit us at: www.uma.pt/floramac2018  Late Registrations still available. See you soon in Funchal!  

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02/01/2018 21:55

Congress FloraMac 2018 | Funchal | September 12-15

Official website comming soon! First circular: https://www.facebook.com/FloraMac2018/ or twitter.com/FloraMac2018

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15/01/2016 11:42

New Doctors in Biological Sciences

We are proud to announce that we have two new doctors in our Group: Zita Ferreira defended successfully her PhD. thesis entitled: “Biosystematics of the genus Andryala L. (Asteraceae)”.   Zita Ferreira thesis committee, from left to right: Miguel Sequeira, Carlos Neto, Jorge Capelo, Enrique...

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02/10/2014 11:42

XVII Congress of European Mycologists

Our Group is co-organizing the XVII Congress of European Mycologists, that will be held in Madeira Island in September 2015. Registration opening soon at www.xviicem.org. 

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29/07/2014 13:36

New Paper: Andryala perezii (Asteraceae), a New Species from the Canary Islands

Recently a new species of Andryala was described by our group. The study was published in the journal Novon: A Journal for Botanical Nomenclature, entitled "Andryala perezii (Asteraceae), a New Species from the Canary Islands". The comparison of Madeira and Canaries Island plants allowed...

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