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This is our special IGPS
Spring-Time Special!

Well, at least for the Northern Hemisphere!
Let's call it Autum special for the Southern Hemiphere folks!

The webmaster only knows too well by own experience that springtime and pollen is strongly related. ATISHOO!!! This must have been similar at least since the Late Carboniferous (some 300 million years ago) when the conifers (pine trees) arose. Springtime pollen must have particularly increased - ATISHOO!!! HATSCHI!!!! - from the Late Cretaceous (about 90 million years ago) onwards due to the rise of the modern flowering plants (angiosperms).

Flowers and even pollen are well preserved in the Messel oilshale, a lake deposit from the Lower Tertiary (ca. 45 million years old) situated to the south of Frankfurt am Main (Germany) and famous for its perfect preservation of many fossils:

Thanks to Jens Boysen, Frankfurt, for correcting my mistake in originally positioning Messel to the north of Frankfurt. Am I growing old?

These are flowers from the Lower Tertiary of Messel:

rutacea palm-blossom water-lily
Flower of the extinct group Rutaceae Blossom of a palm tree water lily from the Messel lake

This is a vine pollen from the Messel deposits, quite well preserved and almost 'alive':

animation, 14 kb
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Java-users: You may have a look at an even more exited tumbling pollen!

Here are some more nicely preserved pollen from the Lower Tertiary of Messel:
Tertiary pollen of a sea-lily Tertiary pollen of Mastixiaceae Tertiary pollen of walnut an aggregate of Tertiary pollen

What is the impact of pollen on geology and palaeontology?

Pollen are frequently preserved in Ancient terrestrial deposits and allow to determine the relative ages of these. This makes them a great helper even in finding petroleum. Well, this is known since long, but

here are our latest research results on
the impact of these nasty nose ticklers on evolution!