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Abstract Detail

Paleobotanical Section

Londoño, Liliana [1], Carvalho, Monica R. [2], Wood, Aaron R. [3], Cárdenas, Andrés L. [1], Escobar, Jaime [4], Herrera, Fabiany [5], Jaramillo, Carlos [1], Royer, Dana [6].

Insights into the middle Miocene Climatic Optimum from a Neotropical leaf assemblage.

The middle Miocene Climatic Optimum (MMCO), a global warming event that occurred 16 million years ago, is one of the best analogues to modern climate change. Warming during the MMCO is attributed to a short-term increase in atmospheric CO2 concentrations during the long-term global cooling trend over the past 20 million years of geologic time. Quantitative estimates of atmospheric CO2 concentrations during the MMCO are highly variable (310 - 700 ppmv), indicating further need for robust estimates. Herein we report the recent discovery of an exquisitely preserved middle Miocene leaf assemblage from Panamá (Pedro-Miguel Formation, Panama Canal basin). Leaf cuticles have been observed under fluorescence microscopy, reveling epidermal cells and stomatal pores, which provide a unique opportunity of estimating pCO2 from tropical vegetation. We have found at least fifteen leaf morphotypes, and several typical Neotropical families, including Fabaceae, which will allow a glimpse of Central American tropical forests during the middle Miocene. Study of the natural affinities of the morphotypes, species-specific stomatal parameters (eg, stomatal index, density, pore-length, and single guard cell width), and stable carbon isotope signatures will be used to estimate CO2 levels from this Neotropical record.

Broader Impacts:

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1 - Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Center for Tropical Paleoecology and Archaeology, Ancon, Gorgas Ave., Bldg 235, Panama city, Panama, 0000, Panama
2 - Cornell University, Department of Plant Biology, 412 Mann Library Building, L. H. Bailey Hortorium,, Ithaca, NY, 14853, USA
3 - University of Florida, Florida Museum of Natural History, Gainesville, FL, 32611, USA
4 - Universidad del Norte (UNINORTE), Departamento de Ingeniería Civil y Ambiental, Barranquilla, Atlantico, Colombia
5 - Florida Museum of Natural History-University of Florida, Biology-Paleobotany, Dickinson Hall, Museum Rd & Newell Dr, Uiversity Of Florida Campus, Gainesville, FL, 32611, USA
6 - Wesleyan University, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Middletown, CT, 06459, USA

Climate Change
CO2 levels
Canal basin
stomatal parameters.

Presentation Type: Poster:Posters for Sections
Session: P
Location: Grand Salon A - D/Riverside Hilton
Date: Monday, July 29th, 2013
Time: 5:30 PM
Number: PPB006
Abstract ID:809
Candidate for Awards:None

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