Dominican Republic’s amber cache yields another treasure
Dominican Republic’s amber cache gives up another treasure
Santo Domingo.- A tropical flower has been seen for thefirst time in 45 million years after scientists discovered the plant encased inamber in the Dominican Republic, ABC.com reports Monday.
Dominican Republic has the world’s largest cache of plantsand animals encased in amber, a tree resin crystalized for millions of years.
Closely linked to modern daisies, mints and tomatoes theperfectly intact flower fossil is named Strychnos electri.
It is hoped the discovery will assist scientists todetermine how major evolutionary groups of flowering plants spread across theglobe.
"From just this flower we are able to tell that thisgroup of plants was present in mid-Tertiary forest in the Caribbean, and notjust this species, but that representatives from a large group of floweringplants, the asterids, had formed and were in full speciation mode,"Associate Professor Lena Stuwe, director of the Chrysler Herbarium at RutgersUniversity told the ABC.
The new discovery belongs to the Loganiaceae family andcontains attributes of the Strychnos genus.