Reconstructing the Paleoclimate and Paleoecology of the Eocene Gulf Coastal Plain, U.S. Using Digital Leaf Physiognomy
The analysis of specific physiognomic traits in fossilized leaves has displayed consistent results and can be reliably used to reconstruct paleoclimate and paleoecology. This summer, I will be doing fieldwork to collect well-preserved fossilized floras from the Claiborne group in Tennessee and Kentucky. These samples can be used to estimate mean annual temperature and mean annual precipitation for my specific periods of interest. Past rapid global warming events have been shown to have a distinct impact on plant communities and evaluating their response to such events could hold insight for current and future global warming.