transformation, but Archaeopteris was important because it made up 90 percent of
the forests during the last 15 million years when these changes accelerated,
"Its litter fed the streams and was a major factor in the evolution of
freshwater fishes, whose numbers and varieties exploded in that time, and
influenced the evolution of other marine ecosystems. It was the first plant to
produce an extensive root system, so had a profound impact on soil chemistry.
And once these ecosystem changes happened, they were changed for all time. It
was a one-time thing.
"Archaeopteris made the world almost a modern world in terms of ecosystems that
surround us now," Scheckler concludes.
Meyer-Berthaud and Scheckler are organizing a symposium on Archaeopteris for the
International Botanical Congress, which will meet in St. Louis in August 1999.
"The symposium will address how Archaeopteris might have grown, lived, and
reproduced, as well as how it might be related to its nieces, nephews, and
cousins, the seed plants. Based on what we have been able to learn, researchers
will present new models that can be tested," Scheckler says.
Page: 1 2 3 4 Related biology news :1
Contact: Stephen E. Scheckler
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