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Researchers from Oregon State University have discovered a 100-million-year-old fossilized record of reproduction. The amber found contained an extinct flower.
According to The Science Daily News, the research has been published in the Journal of the Botanical Institute of Texas.
The International Business Times reports that the flower dates back to the mid-Cretaceous period and has been named Micropetasos burmensis. The research says that the fossil was found in a mine in Myanmar, previously known as Burma.
The fossil contains 18 plants in total, of which 10 can be studied. The flowers that were found are only missing petals. According to researchers, the reproduction process that is seen in the fossils found is the same used by modern plants.
This is the first mid-Cretaceous flower specimen in which it was clear to see the pollen tube entering the stigma, showing reproduction.
“The evolution of flowering plants caused an enormous change in the biodiversity of life on Earth, especially in the tropics and subtropics,” according to George Poinar, a professor at Oregon State University.
The flowers are in amazing condition for being practically 100 million years old. The cluster of flowers is one of the most complete ever found.
Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons