Early Permian Glossopteris flora from the Sharda Open Cast Mine, Sohagpur Coalfield, Shahdol District, Madhya Pradesh
Keywords:Glossopteris flora, Early Permian, Barakar Formation, Sharda Open Cast Mine, Sohagpur Coalfield
Well preserved plant fossil assemblage recorded for the first time from the Barakar Formation of Sharda Open Cast Mine, Sohagpur Coalfield, Shahdol District, Madhya Pradesh is documented in this study. The assemblage comprises the orders Equisetales, Glossopteridales and Cordaitales. Equisetales is represented by unidentifiable leafless equisetalean axes bearing nodes and internodes, Glossopteridales comprises one species of Gangamopteris (Gangamopteris intermedia) and seven species of Glossopteris (Glossopteris communis, G. gigas, G. giridihensis, G. indica, G. longicaulis, G. spatulata and Glossopteris sp.), and Cordaitales is known by one species of Noeggerathiopsis (Noeggerathiopsis hislopii). The floral assemblage is broadly comparable with those described previously from the Barakar Formation of Damodar, Mahanadi, Wardha, Godavari, Rajmahal and Satpura Gondwana basins of India. Since the known records of plant mega fossils from the Barakar Formation of Sohagpur Coalfield are meagre, recovery of quantitatively and qualitatively rich plant fossils from the Sharda Open Cast Mine substantiates the geological and geographical distribution of the Glossopteris flora in India in general and that of the Sohagpur Coalfield in particular, and reflects its significance in the formation of coal in the area.
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