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Digging deeper: why we need more Proterozoic algal fossils and how to get them
- Graham, Linda E.
- Journal of phycology 2019 v.55 no.1 pp. 1-6
- Cyanobacteria, Proterozoic eon, algae, fossils
- Known Proterozoic algal fossils raise compelling questions about the origin and diversification of cyanobacteria and eukaryotic algae, and their ecological influence in deep time. This Perspectives article describes particular examples of persistent evolutionary and biogeochemical issues whose resolution would be aided by additional algal fossil evidence from Proterozoic deposits, which have been the subjects of recent intensive study. New Proterozoic geosciences literature relevant to the early diversification of algae is surveyed. Previously underappreciated algal traits that might improve taxonomic attributions of fossil remains are highlighted. Processes that phycologists could use to improve detection of algal fossils are recommended. Potential geological sources of new Proterozoic fossils are suggested.