Palaeogene Charophytes of the Balearic Islands (Spain)
Keywords:Characeae, Biostratigraphy, Biogeography, Mallorca, Menorca, Palaeogene.
AbstractFossil charophytes were recorded in two different stratigraphic units from the non- marine Palaeogene of the Balearic Islands. In the Peguera Limestone Fm. of Mallorca the charophyte flora is characterised by two assemblages. The first contains Raskyella peckii subsp. meridionale, Harrisichara caeciliana and Maedleriella mangenoti, from the Bartonian and Lutetian; whilst the second is characterised by Harrisichara vasiformistuberculata and Nitellopsis (Tectochara) aemula, Middle Priabonian in age. The Cala Blanca Detrital Fm. has yielded Lychnothamnus stockmansii and Sphaerochara inconspicua in Menorca whilst in Mallorca it contains Lychnothamnus praelangeri, L. langeri and Sphaerochara hirmeri. This flora is Late Priabonian and Oligocene in age. These results suggest that the beginning of Paleogene non-marine deposition was diachronic in Mallorca. In terms of biogeography, the Eocene charophytes of Mallorca show affinity with North-African floras. The presence of the Eocene African subspecies Raskyella peckii meridionale in Mallorca enables the biogeographic boundary between this form and the European subspecies R. peckii peckii to be drawn at about 32º N latitude in the Iberian Plate.
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