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Rise of herbaceous diversity at the southeastern margin of the Tibetan Plateau: First insight from fossils
Huang, Yong-Jiang1,2; Zhu, Hai2,3; Su, Tao4; Spicer, Robert A.4,5; Hu, Jin-Jin1; Jia, Lin-Bo1; Zhou, Zhe-Kun1,4
2021-08-05
Source PublicationJOURNAL OF SYSTEMATICS AND EVOLUTION
ISSN1674-4918
Pages15
Abstract

The Hengduan Mountains region (HMR) on the southeastern Tibetan Plateau, supports a high diversity of herbs, particularly in its subalpine to alpine ecosystems, due to high altitude and cool temperate climate. Current understanding on the formation of such herbaceous richness is based chiefly on molecular phylogenies; however, direct geological evidence is lacking because herbs are rarely preserved as macroscopic fossils. In this study, we present abundant fossil fruits and seeds of herbs from the late Pliocene Heqing Basin in the southern HMR. Our systematic analysis shows the presence of at least 18 species belonging to 11 genera, that is, Ranunculus, Corydalis, Rumex, Polygonum, Chenopodium, Stellaria, Fragaria, Astragalus, Aster, Carex, and Schoenoplectus, of which Polygonum is most abundant followed by Astragalus. This finding throws the first light from fossil evidence on the rise of herbaceous diversity in the region. We interpret the local assembly of these herbs as resulting from rapid pre-Pliocene species diversifications of many herbaceous groups in the HMR. As nowadays most of these herbs grow primarily in meadows and a few occur as subaquatic plants, we suggest an open meadow hosting some scattered shrubs in the vicinity of a vegetated wetland in the Heqing Basin during the late Pliocene. This provides the first direct evidence of past treeless open vegetation within the HMR and thus improves our knowledge of vegetation evolution in the region. We suggest that the uplift-induced climate cooling and monsoon-associated precipitation seasonality are potentially the key driving forces for the opening of meadow vegetation in the HMR.

Keywordfossil carpology Hengduan Mountains late Pliocene meadow monsoon Tibetan Plateau
DOI10.1111/jse.12755
Indexed BySCI
Language英语
WOS KeywordLATE PLIOCENE ; HENGDUAN MOUNTAINS ; MOLECULAR PHYLOGENY ; EVOLUTIONARY HISTORY ; PLANT DIVERSITY ; YUNNAN ; BIODIVERSITY ; CHINA ; MONSOONS ; CLIMATE
Funding ProjectNational Natural Science Foundation of China[31670216] ; National Natural Science Foundation of China[31700184] ; National Natural Science Foundation of China[31900194] ; National Natural Science Foundation of China[41972023] ; Major Program of National Natural Science Foundation of China[31590820] ; Major Program of National Natural Science Foundation of China[31590823] ; State Key Laboratory of Palaeobiology and Stratigraphy, Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology (CAS)[163108] ; State Key Laboratory of Palaeobiology and Stratigraphy, Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology (CAS)[183132]
WOS Research AreaPlant Sciences
WOS SubjectPlant Sciences
WOS IDWOS:000681357000001
Funding OrganizationNational Natural Science Foundation of China ; Major Program of National Natural Science Foundation of China ; State Key Laboratory of Palaeobiology and Stratigraphy, Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology (CAS)
PublisherWILEY
Document Type期刊论文
Identifierhttp://ir.nigpas.ac.cn/handle/332004/38469
Collection中国科学院南京地质古生物研究所
Corresponding AuthorHuang, Yong-Jiang
Affiliation1.Chinese Acad Sci, Kunming Inst Bot, Key Lab Plant Biodivers & Biogeog East Asia, Kunming 650201, Yunnan, Peoples R China
2.Chinese Acad Sci, Nanjing Inst Geol & Palaeontol, State Key Lab Palaeobiol & Stratig, Nanjing 210008, Peoples R China
3.Shangrao Normal Univ, Coll Life Sci, Shangrao 334001, Jiangxi, Peoples R China
4.Chinese Acad Sci, Key Lab Trop Forest Ecol, Xishuangbanna Trop Bot Garden, Mengla 666303, Yunnan, Peoples R China
5.Open Univ, Sch Environm Earth & Ecosyst Sci, Milton Keynes MK7 6AA, Bucks, England
First Author AffilicationNanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeonotology,CAS
Corresponding Author AffilicationNanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeonotology,CAS
Recommended Citation
GB/T 7714
Huang, Yong-Jiang,Zhu, Hai,Su, Tao,et al. Rise of herbaceous diversity at the southeastern margin of the Tibetan Plateau: First insight from fossils[J]. JOURNAL OF SYSTEMATICS AND EVOLUTION,2021:15.
APA Huang, Yong-Jiang.,Zhu, Hai.,Su, Tao.,Spicer, Robert A..,Hu, Jin-Jin.,...&Zhou, Zhe-Kun.(2021).Rise of herbaceous diversity at the southeastern margin of the Tibetan Plateau: First insight from fossils.JOURNAL OF SYSTEMATICS AND EVOLUTION,15.
MLA Huang, Yong-Jiang,et al."Rise of herbaceous diversity at the southeastern margin of the Tibetan Plateau: First insight from fossils".JOURNAL OF SYSTEMATICS AND EVOLUTION (2021):15.
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