Boletín de la Sociedad Geológica Mexicana

Volumen 70, núm. 1, 2018, p. 223 ‒ 239

 New records of Humiriaceae fossil fruits from the Oligocene and Early Miocene of the western Azuero Peninsula, Panamá

Nicolas Pérez-Consuegra1,2,*, Daniel E. Góngora3, Fabiany Herrera4, Carlos Jaramillo2, Camilo Montes5,6, Aura M. Cuervo-Gómez3, Austin Hendy7, Alejandro Machado2, Damian Cárdenas2, German Bayona8

1 Department of Earth Sciences, Syracuse University, Syracuse, New York 13244, USA.
2 Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Balboa, Ancón, Panamá.
3 Departamento de Geociencias, Universidad de los Andes, Carrera 1 No. 18A-12, Bogotá, Colombia.
4 Chicago Botanic Garden, 1000 Lake Cook Road, Glencoe, Illinois 60022, USA.
5 Geology, Universidad del Norte, Km. 5 Vía Puerto Colombia, Barranquilla, Colombia.
6 Departamento de Geociencias, Universidad de los Andes, Carrera 1 No. 18A-12, Bogotá, Colombia.
7 History Museum of Los Angeles County, Los Angeles, CA 90007, USA.
8 Corporación Geológica ARES, Bogotá, Colombia.

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Understanding the origin of the diversity in Central American forests requires the integration of both extant and fossil taxa. Here, we provide a description of Humiriaceae fossils from two new sedimentary sequences in the Azuero Peninsula, Panamá. Fossils were recovered from Oligocene (one locality) and Early Miocene (two localities) marginal marine deposits. We describe new specimens and augment the generic description of Lacunofructus cuatrecasana Herrera, Manchester et Jaramillo, and present a new record of Sacoglottissp. Our results expand the temporal and geographical distribution of both taxa and show that Humiriaceae was an important constituent of early Central American forests, and that this family was dispersed in between Central and South America before the final closure of the Central American Seaway. Further studies are necessary to establish whether the origin of this family was in Central or South America.

Keywords: Central America, fossil endocarps, Lacunofructus, Neotropical forests, Isthmus of Panama, Sacoglottis.