Rare Jurassic Bucklandia Cycad Tree Trunk

Bucklandia sp = Cycadeoidea sp

Spermatophyta Division Cycadophyta, Class Spermatopsida, Order Bennettitales,
Family Cycadeoidaceae, Genus Cycadeoidea

Geological Time: Jurassic (~ 146 to 156 mllion years ago)

Size: length is 34 inches

Fossil Site: Morrison Formation, Brushy Basin Member, Grand County, Utah

Jurassic Bucklandia Cycad Plant FossilThe cycads are known to be an extremely ancient group of seed plants, and are now recognized as the sister group to all other living seed plants. Fossil cycads are known from the Lower Permian of China, 270-280 million years ago, and the group is thought to have arisen from within the ancient seed ferns, of the later Palaeozoic, era. Strictly speaking, most fossil cycads are called cycadeoids and are classified scientifically in the order Bennettitales. They remain extant and are commonly referred to a living fossils. The cycads widely radiated and spread in the Permian and early Mesozoic, and have since continued as a separate lineage. During the Jurassic, cycads and their kin along with conifers and ginkgos dominated the plant kingdom. Fossil cycads are known from Mesozoic deposits on every continent and Cycad Tree Illustrationlatitude from Siberia to the Antarctic.

The three extant cycad families are similar to fossils from the early Tertiary, some 50-60 million years ago. There are also about 19 extinct cycad genera known only as fossils, all from the Paleozoic and Mesozoic eras, excluding the form taxa, that is, isolated leaf or stem fossils that are clearly cycads but cannot be placed in a known family or genus.

Cycadeoidea Jurassic Cycad Plant FossilComing from the famous Morrison Formation in Utah, this enormous an exceedingly rare cycad fossil trunk is of the genus Bucklandia and dates to the Jurassic. Climates of Jurassic Utah were mild and moist, as attested to by the rich fossil record of the Morrison Formation from where this cycad fossil comes. Plant and dinosaurs fossils are typically found in the Morrison Formation, including Cycads, ginkgos, conifers, horsetails among plants and Allosaurus, Camptosaurus, Stegosaurus, and Camarasaurus among dinosaurs. The Jurassic Period is sometimes called the "Age of Cycads" because they were so common then. Cycads probably were eaten by some of the herbivorous dinosaurs. Petrified cycads are commonly found in the same rocks with dinosaur bones.

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