Fossil Winged Walnut Fruit & Reproductive Structure - North Dakota

This is a beautiful Paleocene age fossil association containing a flowering plant (Amersinia obtrullata) reproductive structure and a fossil fruit from the Juglandaceae (Walnut) family of the species Cyclocarya brownii. This specimen was collected from the Sentinel Butte Formation of North Dakota. The fossils are finely detailed and the light preservation contrasts well against the dark orangish-brown rock.

Comes with an acrylic display stand.

The Juglandaceae (walnuts, hickories, pecans) has one of the best-documented fossil records in the Northern Hemisphere. The oldest modern genus, Cyclocarya, today restricted to China, first appears in the late Paleocene (57 ma) of North Dakota, USA. Unlike walnuts and pecans that produce edible fruits dispersed by mammals, Cyclocarya fruits are small nutlets surrounded by a prominent circular wing, and are thought to be wind- or water-dispersed. Because Cyclocarya fruits are winged, they might be assumed to be wind-disperse, but their radial symmetry does not have the aerodynamic qualities typical of wind-dispersed fruits, and may have been dispersed by water.

A paper describing these fruits in depth is linked below.

Cyclocarya brownii from the Paleocene of North Dakota, USA




DETAILS
SPECIES
Amersinia obtrullata & Cyclocarya brownii (Fruit)
LOCATION
Morton County, North Dakota
FORMATION
Sentinel Butte Formation
SIZE
1.1" wide fruit on 4 x 3.3" rock
CATEGORY
ITEM
#145348
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