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Epitypes of Diploneis species from Neogene fosill deposits

I just got word that another collaborative paper has been made available online. Phytotaxa published our taxonomic treatment of Diploneis species from Köpecz (a Neogene lacustrine deposit in Romania). We were working with fossil remains of diatoms from a large lake that existed more than 2.5 million years ago and is now dead. All that remains from this lake are its sediments where inorganic parts of diatoms have been preserved. Since diatoms have cell walls made out of silica they settled to the bottom of the lake and were preserved for few million years. The interesting thing is that these fossils might have very close relatives in some extant diatoms from Lake Ohrid (another of our study sites).

I have to thank Eci and Zlatko, my productive collaborators from the Institute of Biology at Faculty of Natural Sciences in Skopje, who lead this project as well as Krisztina and Nadja from Hungary and Bulgaria.

Holes & poles manuscript now out

We just got word that our paper on the phylogeny of incredibly morphologically diverse (multi-) polar diatoms is available in the accepted articles section of Journal of Phycology. It looks like the paper is going to be included in the December issue of the journal. Meanwhile, a provisional abstract and the article can be found here. Matt Ashworth (my labmate and first author on the paper) joking calls this project the Holes n’Poles paper because most of the discussion around the taxonomy and classification of this group relies on pore and ocellus structure (the holes n’poles of a diatom cell wall).

Thanks to Matt for all his hard work in getting this done. My contribution was mainly on the analysis side of things. I learned a lot through the process.