Links for Palaeobotanists

Home / Evolution & Extinction / Focussed on the Fossil Record

Web Sites about Evolution
The Molecular Clock and/or/versus the Fossil Record
Insect Evolution
Evolution Sciences versus Doctrines of Creationism and Intelligent Design
Web Sites about Mass Extinctions
The Mass Extinction at the End of the Permian
Biotic Recovery from the Permian-Triassic Mass Extinction
The Mass Extinction at the End of the Triassic
Living Fossils
! Plant Evolution@
! Teaching Documents about Palaeontology and Palaeoecology@
! Teaching Documents about Stratigraphy and Historical Geology@
! Geologic Time Scale@
! Teaching Documents about Evolution@
! Parasitic Plants@
The Gaia Hypothesis@
Databases focused on Palaeobotany and Palaeontology@
Glossaries, Dictionaries and Encyclopedias: Palaeontology@

Focussed on the Fossil Record

H. Agic (2016): Fossil Focus: Acritarchs. In PDF, Palaeontology Online, 6: 1-13.

! J.F. Allen and W.F.J. Vermaas (2010): Evolution of Photosynthesis. PDF file, In: Encyclopedia of Life Sciences (ELS), John Wiley & Sons.

J. Alroy et al. (2008): Phanerozoic Trends in the Global Diversity of Marine Invertebrates. In PDF, Science, 321. See also here.

J. Alroy et al. (2001): Effects of sampling standardization on estimates of Phanerozoic marine diversification. In PDF, PNAS, 98: 6261-6266.

S.M. Awramik (2006): Respect for stromatolites. In PDF, Nature, 441.

! Stanley M. Awramik, Department of Earth Science, University of California Santa Barbara:
The Record of Life on the Early Earth. Lecture notes, Powerpoint presentation.

! Anna K. Behrensmeyer (1992; Google books): Terrestrial ecosystems through time.

S. Bengtson et al. (2017): Three-dimensional preservation of cellular and subcellular structures suggests 1.6 billion-year-old crown-group red algae. Open Access, PLoS Biol., 15: e2000735.

! R.B.J. Benson et al. (2021): Biodiversity across space and time in the fossil record. Free access, Current Biology, 31: R1225-R1236.
Note figure 3: Distribution of geographic and environmental sampling in the marine and terrestrial fossil records.
"... it will be impossible to directly estimate total global biodiversity from fossil data, principally because the fossil record is not complete enough
[...] the fossil record provides the only dataset that might allow us to put constraints on this important question, using information from exceptional, well-sampled but spatially and temporally restricted windows. These windows provide the best information on local, regional and environmental diversity levels, and how they vary in space ..."

! M.J. Benton and F. Wu (2022): Triassic revolution. Free access, Frontiers in Earth Science, 10. See also here.
Note figure 9: Novel physiological and functional characteristics, new tetrapod, insect and plant groups in the Triassic on land.
"... On land, ongoing competition between synapsids and archosauromorphs through the Triassic was marked by a posture shift from sprawling to erect, and a shift in physiology to warm-bloodedness, with insulating skin coverings of hair and feathers. Dinosaurs, for example, originated in the Early or Middle Triassic, but did not diversify until after the CPE [Carnian Pluvial Episode]. ..."

! M.J. Benton et al. (2022): The Angiosperm Terrestrial Revolution and the origins of modern biodiversity. Free access, New Phytologist, 233: 2017–2035.
Note fig. 1: Evolution of hyperdiverse terrestrial life.
Fig. 3: Key stages in Earth history and angiosperm evolution through the Angiosperm Terrestrial Revolution.
Also worth checking out:
Flowering plants: an evolution revolution. (Univ. of Bristol, November 17, 2021).
How 'Flower Power' Quite Literally Transformed Earth Millions of Years Ago (by T. Koumoundouros, January 08,2022).

M.J. Benton et al. (2018): The Carnian Pluvial Episode and the origin of dinosaurs. In PDF, Journal of the Geological Society. See also here.
"... the CPE [Carnian Pluvial Episode] marks a major macroecological shift in faunas. We focus on the long-recognised major burst in dinosaurian diversity, the DDE [Dinosaur Diversification Event], which corresponds in age to the CPE. The diversity and abundance of tetrapods through the Triassic indicate a major disjunction at exactly the CPE. This is shown by both skeletal and footprint data, and can be detected by use of novel computational means that seek to identify statistically significant breaks in lines of best fit. ..."

M. J. Benton et al. (2014): Review Models for the Rise of the Dinosaurs. In PDF, Current Biology 24. See also here.

Michael J. Benton (2010): The origins of modern biodiversity on land. In PDF, Transactions of the Royal Society, B.

! M.J. Benton (2010): Studying Function and Behavior in the Fossil Record. Free access, PLoS Biol, 8: e1000321.

Michael Benton, Department of Earth Sciences, University of Bristol, UK: Accuracy of Fossils and Dating Methods (an original interview, American Institute of Biological Sciences).
Still available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

M.J. Benton (2001): Department of Earth Sciences, University of Bristol: Biodiversity on land and in the sea. PDF file, Geological Journal 36, 211-230.
See also here.

M.J. Benton and D.A.T. Harper: Introduction to Paleobiology and the Fossil Record. Go to:
! Companion Website: Introduction to Paleobiology and the Fossil Record. On this website you can download the figures in jpeg format at standard resolution (96 dpi) for viewing on screen and at a higher resolution (300 dpi) for downloading. They can also be downloaded as a Powerpoint file for each chapter.
! See also here (in PDF).
For better navigation note the table of contents (in PDF).

M.J. Benton and P.N. Pearson (2001): Speciation in the fossil record. PDF file, Trends in Ecology and Evolution, 16.

M.J. Benton et al. 2000): Quality of the fossil record through time. Nature, 403: 534-537.
See also here.
"... new assessment methods, in which the order of fossils in the rocks (stratigraphy) is compared with the order inherent in evolutionary trees (phylogeny), provide a more convincing analytical tool: stratigraphy and phylogeny offer independent data on history. ..."

! H. Beraldi-Campesi (2013): Early life on land and the first terrestrial ecosystems. In PDF, Ecological Processes, 2. See also here.
Note figure 1: Suggested chronology of geological, atmospheric, and biological events during the Hadean, Archean, and Paleoproterozoic eons.

! Museum of Paleontology (UCMP), University of California, Berkeley (sponsored in part by Shell Offshore Inc.): Learning from the Fossil Record. This is a hypertext version of a book originally published by the Paleontological Society.

University of California Museum of Paleontology, Berkeley: Explorations Through Time. A series of interactive modules (curriculum and classroom resources) that explore the history of life on Earth, while focusing on the processes of science. Each module contains suggested lesson plans and an extensive teacher’s guide.

! BioDeepTime:
This project seeks to address one of the central challenges in biodiversity science by compiling and harmonizing ecological time series from modern and fossil sources to investigate how biological dynamics and drivers vary across timescales ranging from months to millions of years. Note likewise here.
Please take notice:
! J. Smith et al. (2023): BioDeepTime: A database of biodiversity time series for modern and fossil assemblages. Open access, Global Ecol Biogeogr.
Note table 1: Approximate temporal grain (the amount of time represented in a sample) for time series, number of time series and number of samples from source databases included in BioDeepTime.
"... The BioDeepTime database enables integrated biodiversity analyses across a far greater range of temporal scales than has previously been possible. It can be used to provide critical insights into how natural systems will respond to ongoing and future environmental changes as well as new opportunities for theoretical insights into the temporal scaling of biodiversity dynamics ..."

A.C. Bippus et al. (2022): The Role of Paleontological Data in Bryophyte Systematics. Abstract, Journal of Experimental Botany.
"... Paucity of the bryophyte fossil record, driven primarily by phenotypic (small plant size) and ecological constraints (patchy substrate-hugging populations), and incomplete exploration, results in many morphologically isolated, taxonomically ambiguous fossil taxa. Nevertheless, instances of exquisite preservation and pioneering studies demonstrate the feasibility of including bryophyte fossils in evolutionary inference. ..."

B. Blonder et al. (2014): Plant Ecological Strategies Shift Across the Cretaceous-Paleogene Boundary. Open acces, PLoS Biol, 12.

Boston College: BC Scientist´s Fossil Discovery May Indicate Life on Land Evolved Earlier than Thought.
The link is to a version archived by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! A.M.C. Bowles et al. (2023): The origin and early evolution of plants. Open access, Trends in Plant Science, 28.
Note figure 2: Phylogeny of early plant evolution with a selection of available genomic resources.
Figure 3: Fossils of possible and probable early archaeplastids.
! Figure 4: Summary of molecular estimates for the timescale of archaeplastid evolution.
"... Molecular clock analyses estimate that Streptophyta and Viridiplantae emerged in the late Mesoproterozoic to late Neoproterozoic, whereas Archaeplastida emerged in the late-mid Palaeoproterozoic ..."

! M.D. Brasier et al. (2016): Changing the picture of Earth´s earliest fossils (3.5–1.9 Ga) with new approaches and new discoveries. PNAS, 112: 4859-4864. See also here (in PDF).

M. Brasier (2015): Deep questions about the nature of early-life signals: a commentary on Lister (1673) "A description of certain stones figured like plants". In PDF, Phil. Trans. R. Soc., A 373. See also here.

! M. Brasier et al. (2006): A fresh look at the fossil evidence for early Archaean cellular life. In PDF, Philos. Trans. R. Soc. Lond. B, Biol Sci., 361: 887–902. See also here.

Brent H. Breithaupt (1992): The use of fossils in interpreting past environments. PDF file, Pages 147–158, in: Tested studies for laboratory teaching, Volume 13 (C. A. Goldman, Editor). Proceedings of the 13th Workshop/Conference of the Association for Biology Laboratory Education.
This expired link is now available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

J.C. Briggs (2014): Invasions, adaptive radiations, and the generation of biodiversity. In PDF, Environmental Skeptics and Critics, 3: 8-16.

! Derek Briggs and Peter Crowther (eds.), Earth Pages, Blackwell Publishing: Paleobiology: A Synthesis (PDF files). Series of concise articles from over 150 leading authorities from around the world. Excellent! Snapshot now taken by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.
Navigate from the content file. There are no restrictions on downloading this material. Worth checking out:
Part 1. Major Events in the History of Life, Pages 1-92.
! Derek Briggs Part 2. The Evolutionary Process and the Fossil Record, Pages 93-210.
Part 3. Taphonomy, Pages 211-304.
Part 4. Palaeoecology, Pages 305-414.
Part 5. Taxonomy, Phylogeny and Biostratigraphy, Pages 415-490.

N. Brocklehurst et al. (2018): Physical and environmental drivers of Paleozoic tetrapod dispersal across Pangaea. Open access, Nature Communications, 9.

! J.J. Brocks et al. (2023): Lost world of complex life and the late rise of the eukaryotic crown. In PDF, Nature, See also here.
Note figure 1: Geological time chart comparing the molecular fossil, microfossil and phylogenetic records of early eukaryote evolution.

L.A. Buatois et al. (2016): The Mesozoic Lacustrine Revolution. Abstract, The Trace-Fossil Record of Major Evolutionary Events, Series Topics in Geobiology, 40: 179-263.
! See also here (in PDF).

G.E. Budd and S. Jensen (2020): A critical reappraisal of the fossil record of the bilaterian phyla. Abstract, Biological Reviews, 75_253-295.
"... Indeed, the combination of the body and trace fossil record demonstrates a progressive diversification through the end of the Proterozoic well into the Cambrian and beyond, a picture consistent with body plans being assembled during this time. ..."

G.E. Budd (2008): The earliest fossil record of the animals and its significance. Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B, 363: 1425–1434. See here.

R.J. Burnham (2008): Hide and Go Seek: What Does Presence Mean in the Fossil Record. Abstract, Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden, 95: 51-71. See also here (in PDF).

! C. Cai et al. (2022): Integrated phylogenomics and fossil data illuminate the evolution of beetles. Open access, R. Soc. Open Sci. 9: 211771.
Note figure 2: Timescale of beetle evolution displayed as a family-level tree.
! "... Our divergence time analyses recovered a late Carboniferous origin of Coleoptera, a late Palaeozoic origin of all modern beetle suborders and a Triassic–Jurassic origin of most extant families, while fundamental divergences within beetle phylogeny did not coincide with the hypothesis of a Cretaceous Terrestrial Revolution ..."

E. Callaway (2015): Computers read the fossil record. Palaeontologists hope that software can construct fossil databases directly from research papers. In PDF, Nature Toolbox. See also here.

T. Cardona (2018): Early Archean origin of heterodimeric Photosystem I. In PDF, Heliyon, 4. See also here.

T. Cardona (2016): Reconstructing the Origin of Oxygenic Photosynthesis: Do Assembly and Photoactivation Recapitulate Evolution? Front. PlantSci., 7: 257.

! E.M. Carlisle et al. (2021): Experimental taphonomy of organelles and the fossil record of early eukaryote evolution. Open access, Science Advances, 7. DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.abe9487 See also here (in PDF).

B. Cascales-Miñana and C.J. Cleal (2012): Plant fossil record and survival analyses. In PDF, Lethaia, 45. See also here (abstract).

! B. Cascales-Miñana and C.J. Cleal (2013): The plant fossil record reflects just two great extinction events. Abstract. See also here (in PDF).

B. Cascales-Miñana and J.B. Diez (2012): The effect of singletons and interval length on interpreting diversity trends from the palaeobotanical record. In PDF, Palaeontologia Electronica.

B. Cavalazzi et al. (2021): Cellular remains in a ~3.42-billion-year-old subseafloor hydrothermal environment. Sci. Adv. 7, eabf3963 (2021). See also here (in PDF).
"... they can be considered the oldest methanogens and/or methanotrophs that thrived in an ultramafic volcanic substrate. ..."

! J.T. Clarke et al. (2011): Establishing a time-scale for plant evolution. PDF file, New Phytologist. See also here.
! Note figure 2: A representative tree of relationships between model representatives of the major land plant lineages whose plastid or nuclear genomes have been fully sequenced.
Figure 7: Chronogram for land plant evolution.
Figure 8: Chronograms for the six molecular clock analyses conducted.
"... We reject both a post-Jurassic origin of angiosperms and a post-Cambrian origin of land plants. Our analyses also suggest that the establishment of the major embryophyte lineages occurred at a much slower tempo than suggested in most previous studies. ..."

! C.J. Cleal and B. Cascales-Miñana (2021, start on PDF-page 39): Evolutionary floras - revealing large-scale patterns in Palaeozoic vegetation history. Journal of Palaeosciences, 70: 31-42.

C.J. Cleal et al. (2021): Palaeobotanical experiences of plant diversity in deep time. 1: How well can we identify past plant diversity in the fossil record? Abstract, Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 576.
See likewise here (in PDF).
"... Autochthonous floras provide the most direct evidence of vegetation diversity but these are rare; most plant beds are allochthonous with plant remains that have been subjected to varying levels of fragmentation, transportation and time averaging
[...] the plant fossil record provides clear evidence of the dynamic history of vegetation through geological times, including the effects of major processes such as climate changes and mass extinctions ..."

J.L. Cloudsley-Thompson (2005): Ecology and Behaviour of Mesozoic Reptiles, The Mesozoic Environment. In PDF. See also here,

! J.C. Coates et al. (2011): Plants and the Earth system - past events and future challenges. In PDF, New Phytologist, 89: 370-373.
See also here.

E.J. Chaisson (2014): The Natural Science Underlying Big History. In PDF, The Scientific World Journal.
Website saved by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! Eric J. Chaisson, Wright Center for Science Education: Cosmic evolution: from big bang to humankind. Based on a course taught at Harvard University. This site offers background information and resources to understand the origins of matter and life in our universe, known as cosmic evolution. Questions from how the universe began to how humans evolved are addressed, using an interdisciplinary approach between life, Earth, space, and physical sciences.
Website now publicly accessible by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! J.C. Coates et al. (2011): Plants and the Earth system - past events and future challenges. In PDF, New Phytologist, 89: 370-373.

See also here.

! Matthew Cobb, whyevolutionistrue: Excellent open access articles on the evolution of life on Earth - UPDATE 2.

! Committee on the Geologic Record of Biosphere Dynamics, National Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences (The National Academies Press): The Geological Record of Ecological Dynamics: Understanding the Biotic Effects of Future Environmental Change. 216 pages, 2005. Produced by a committee consisting of both ecologists and paleontologists, the report provides ecologists with background on techniques for obtaining and evaluating geohistorical information, and provides paleontologists with background on the nature of ecological phenomena amenable to analysis in the geological record. The report can be read online for free!

! F.L. Condamine et al. (2020): The rise of angiosperms pushed conifers to decline during global cooling. Free access, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 117: 28867–28875.
Note figure 1: An overview of hypothetical determinants of conifer diversification over time.
Figure 2: Global diversification of conifers inferred from a molecular phylogeny and the fossil record.
Figure 3: Drivers of conifer diversification dynamics.

! F.L. Condamine et al. (2013): Macroevolutionary perspectives to environmental change. In PDF, Ecology letters.

! Richard Cowen (web pages were first created by D.J. Eernisse for Biology 404: Evolution at CSUF): History of Life (4th Edition, 2005), Web Links by Chapter. This expired link is available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

Richard Cowen, Department of Geology, University of California, Davis, CA: History of Life, Third Edition.
Go to: Preservation and Bias in the Fossil Record.
These expired links are now available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

M.B. Cruzan and A.R. Templeton (2000): Paleoecology and coalescence: phylogeographic analysis of hypotheses from the fossil record. PDF file, Trends in Ecology and Evolution, 15.
Still available via Internet Archive Wayback Machine.
See also here.

A. Currie (2019): Paleobiology and philosophy. Open access, Biology & Philosophy, 34.

M. D'Ario et al. (2023): Hidden functional complexity in the flora of an early land ecosystem. Free access, New Phytologist, doi: 10.1111/nph.19228.
"... Our approach highlights the impact of sporangia morphology on spore dispersal and adaptation
We discovered previously unidentified innovations among early land plants, discussing how different species might have opted for different spore dispersal strategies ..."

K. De Baets et al. (2021): The fossil record of parasitism: Its extent and taphonomic constraints. In PDF, The Evolution and Fossil Record of Parasitism, pp. 1-50. See also here.

K. De Baets and D.T.J. Littlewood (2015): The Importance of Fossils in Understanding the Evolution of Parasites and Their Vectors. Advances in Parasitology, 90: 1–51.

O. De Clerck et al. (2012): Diversity and Evolution of Algae: Primary Endosymbiosis. In PDF, Advances in Botanical Research, 64.

! L.E.V. Del-Bem (2018): Xyloglucan evolution and the terrestrialization of green plants. Free access, New Phytologist, 219: 1150–1153.

! C.F. Demoulin (2019): Cyanobacteria evolution: Insight from the fossil record. In PDF, Free Radical Biology and Medicine, 140: 206–223.
See also here.
Note table 1: Summary of microfossil morphological features, habitat, occurrences and their modern analogues.
Figure 3: Microfossils record of unambiguous, probable and possible cyanobacteria.
"... Cyanobacterial fossil record starts unambiguously at 1.89–1.84 Ga and the minimum age for the oxygenic photosynthesis starts with the GOE [Great Oxidation Event] around 2.4 Ga. ..."

Senatskommission für Zukunftsaufgaben der Geowissenschaften der Deutschen Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG):
Dynamische Erde – Zukunftsaufgaben der Geowissenschaften. 8.1 - Die Evolution von Atmosphäre und Ozeanen. In German
Still available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

Senatskommission für Zukunftsaufgaben der Geowissenschaften der Deutschen Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG):
Dynamische Erde – Zukunftsaufgaben der Geowissenschaften. 10.3 – Krisen der Evolution und Dynamik der Biodiversität. In German.
Still available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! J. De Vries and J.M. Archibald (2018): Plant evolution: landmarks on the path to terrestrial life. Free access, New Phytologist, 217: 1428-1434.

J. de Vries et al. (2018): Embryophyte stress signaling evolved in the algal progenitors of land plants. In PDF, PNAS, 115. See also here (abstract), and there (in German).

The Digital Atlas of Ancient Life (DAoAL), managed by the Paleontological Research Institution, Ithaca, New York.
The goal of the Digital Atlas of Ancient Life project is to provide a free resource to help individuals identify and better understand fossil species from particular regions and time intervals.
Note the resources for teachers: Classroom lesson plans, activities, and associated materials that relate to either the Neogene or Ordovician Atlas. All of these resources may be freely accessed and downloaded.

Emanuele Di Lorenzo, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Georgia:
Early Earth and the Origins of Life.
Powerpoint presentation.

W.A. DiMichele et al. (2008): The so-called "Paleophytic–Mesophytic" transition in equatorial Pangea. Multiple biomes and vegetational tracking of climate change through geological time. PDF file, Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 268: 152-163.
See likewise here (abstract), and there (still available via Internet Archive Wayback Machine).
! "... the evidence for a global “Paleophytic” vs. “Mesophytic” “vegetation” is simply unsubstantiated by the fossil record.
[...] The vegetational changes occurring in the late Paleozoic thus can be understood best when examined as spatial–temporal changes in biome-scale species pools responding to major global climate changes, locally and regionally manifested. ..."

W.A. DiMichele et al. (2004): Long-term stasis in ecological assemblages: evidence from the fossil record. PDF file, Annu. Rev. Ecol. Evol. Syst., 35: 285-322. This expired link is available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

R. Dirzo and P.H. Raven (2003): Global state of biodiversity and loss. In PDF, Annu. Rev. Environ. Resour., 28.

! M. Dohrmann and G. Wörheide (2017): Dating early animal evolution using phylogenomic data. Open access, Scientific reports, 7.
! Note Figure 4: Time-calibrated phylogeny of animals.

! P.C.J. Donoghue et al. (2021): The evolutionary emergence of land plants. In PDF, Current Biology, 31: R1281-R1298.
See also here.
"... The oldest possible fossil evidence for land plants occurs as late Cambrian cryptospores, but their irregular arrangements and occurrence in ‘packets’ of multiple spore-like bodies surrounded by synoecosporal walls has led to algal interpretations ..."
! Note figure 4: Timescale of streptophyte phylogeny and the origin of land plant novelties.

! P.C.J. Donoghue and Z. Yang (2016): The evolution of methods for establishing evolutionary timescales. In PDF, Phil. Trans. R. Soc., B 371.See also here (abstract).

! P.C.J. Donoghue and M.J. Benton (2007): Rocks and clocks: calibrating the Tree of Life using fossils and molecules. In PDF, Trends in Ecology and Evolution.
See also here.
! Note figure 2: Concordance of palaeontological data, phylogenetic hypotheses, macroevolutionary events and molecular clock.

A.M. Dunhill et al. (2016): Dinosaur biogeographical structure and Mesozoic continental fragmentation: a network-based approach. In PDF, Journal of Biogeography, 43: 1691-1704.
See also here.
"... dinosaur macro-biogeographical structure was influenced by continental fragmentation, although intercontinental exchange of dinosaur faunas appears to have continued up to the end of the Cretaceous. Macro-biogeographical patterns are obscured by uneven geographical sampling through time ..."

F.S. Dunn et al. (2022): A crown-group cnidarian from the Ediacaran of Charnwood Forest, UK. Open access, Nature Ecology & Evolution, 6: 1095–1104.
"... Phylogenetic analyses recover Auroralumina as a stem-group medusozoan and, therefore, the oldest crown-group cnidarian. Auroralumina demonstrates both the establishment of the crown group of an animal phylum and the fixation of its body plan tens of millions of years before the Cambrian diversification of animal life. ..."
Worth checking out:
Lifting the veil on the oldest-known animals (by M. Laflamme, Nature News and Views, September 13, 2022).
"... Gaps in the fossil record mean that the origins of ancient animals such as jellyfish and corals have remained a mystery. Now, a long-awaited fossil discovery reveals key features of this group during the early stages of its evolution. A fossil from the Ediacaran period sheds light on early cnidarians. ..."

G. Escarguel et al. (2011): Biodiversity is not (and never has been) a bed of roses! In PDF, Comptes Rendus Biologies.

C. Faist, Geohorizon: Geochronologie (in German). All in a nutshell about Paleozoic, Mesozoic, Cenozoic.

M. Fakhraee et al. (2023): Earth's surface oxygenation and the rise of eukaryotic life: Relationships to the Lomagundi positive carbon isotope excursion revisited. In PDF, Earth-Science Review, 240.
See also here.
! Note figure 1: Major geochemical changes and the emergence of key biological groups over the past four billion years of Earth’s history.
! Figure 5: Major events in the evolution of eukaryotic life on Earth.

M.A. Fedonkin (2003): The origin of the Metazoa in the light of the Proterozoic fossil record. In PDF, Paleontological Research, 7: 9-41. See also here.

A.G. Fischer et al. (2004): Cyclostratigraphic approach to Earths history: An introduction. In PDF.

! W.W. Fischer et al. (2016): How did life survive Earth's great oxygenation? In PDF, Current Opinion in Chemical Biology, 31: 166–178.

J.T. Flannery-Sutherland et al. (2022): fossilbrush: An R package for automated detection and resolution of anomalies in palaeontological occurrence data. Open access, Methods in Ecology and Evolution, 13: 2404-2418.
Go to: fossilbrush: Automated Cleaning of Fossil Occurrence Data. See also here.
! Access to the Paleobiology Database.

J.T. Flannery-Sutherland et al. (2022): Global diversity dynamics in the fossil record are regionally heterogeneous. Open access, Nature Communications, 13.

Museum of Natural History, University of Florence: The Origin of Life. Life through time, in a nutshell.
Available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

M. Foote and D.M. Raup (2010): Fossil preservation and the stratigraphic ranges of taxa. In PDF, Paleobiology, 22: 121-140.

David Ford, Canopy Dynamics Lab, School of Environmental and Forest Resources, University of Washington, Seattle, WA:
! Biol220 TAs. Botany lecture notes (Powerpoint presentations). See especially:
The Importance of Plants, their origins and ways of life.
Plant evolution timeline on Powerpoint slide 11, 18 and 22!

! D.A. Fordham et al. (2020): Using paleo-archives to safeguard biodiversity under climate change. In PDF, Science, 369.
See likewise here.
"... Fordham et al. review when and where rapid climate transitions can be found in the paleoclimate record
[...] They also highlight how recent developments at the intersection of paleoecology, paleoclimatology, and macroecology can provide opportunities to anticipate and manage the responses of species and ecosystems to changing climates in the Anthropocene ..."

! F. Forrest (2009): Calibrating the Tree of Life: fossils, molecules and evolutionary timescales. Free access, Annals of Botany, 104: 789–794.
"... New methods have now been proposed to resolve potential sources of error associated with the calibration of phylogenetic trees, particularly those involving use of the fossil record.
[...] ! "...the fossil record remains the most reliable source of information for the calibration of phylogenetic trees, although associated assumptions and potential bias must be taken into account. ..."

! A. Free and N.H. Barton (2007): Do evolution and ecology need the Gaia hypothesis? Trends in ecology & evolution, 22.
See likewise here.
Note figure 2: Illustration of the range of spatial and temporal scaling necessary to extrapolate from molecular and cellular processes to the biosphere.
"... Gaia theory, which describes the life–environment system of the Earth as stable and self-regulating, has remained at the fringes of mainstream biological science
[...] The key issue is whether and why the biosphere might tend towards stability and self-regulation. We review the various ways in which these issues have been addressed by evolutionary and ecological theory, and relate these to ‘Gaia theory’ ..."

T. Fujikawa et al. (2024): Comparative analysis of reconstructed ancestral proteins with their extant counterparts suggests primitive life had an alkaline habitat. Open access, Scientific Reports, 14. 398.
Note figure 4: Candidate habitats for primitive life and their estimated pH values.
"... To understand the origin and early evolution of life it is crucial to establish characteristics of the primordial environment
[...] Our results indicate that the reconstructed ancestral proteins are more akin to those of extant alkaliphilic bacteria, which display greater stability under alkaline conditions. These findings suggest that the common ancestors of bacterial and archaeal species thrived in an alkaline environment ..."

J.M.R. Fürst-Jansen et al. (2020): Evo-physio: on stress responses and the earliest land plants. Free access, Journal of Experimental Botany, 71: 3254–3269.

! J.M. Galloway and S. Lindström (2023): Wildfire in the geological record: Application of Quaternary methods to deep time studies. Open access, Evolving Earth, 1.
! Note figure 1: Summary figure of changes in atmospheric O2 [...] and important events in Earth’s history, climate state, selected extinction events.

! P.G. Gensel (2021): When did terrestrial plants arise? Abstract, Science, 373: : 736-737.
"... There has been a discrepancy in the time of land plant origination between molecular clock estimations (based on genes and RNA) and fossil record estimates (based on morphology). On page 792 of this issue, Strother and Foster (6) describe fossilized spores whose characteristics raise the possibility that land plants arose by co-opting algal genes, along with acquiring de novo genes, and that the former would account for the molecular clock predating the fossil record. ..."

! P.G. Gensel (2008): The earliest land plants. In PDF, The Annual Review of Ecology, Evolution, and Systematics, 39: 459-477.
See also here.

! Geological Society of America:
Geologic Time Scale.

! P. Gerrienne et al. (2022): Earliest Evidence of Land Plants in Brazil. In PDF, In: Iannuzzi, R., Rößler, R., Kunzmann, L. (eds.): Brazilian Paleofloras. Springer.
See also here.
Note. fig. 3: Suggested life cycle of an early vascular plant from the early Devonian Rhynie Chert.
Fig. 4b: Suggested reconstruction of Cooksonia paranensis.
Fig. 5: Suggested life cycle of Cooksonia paranensis.

Stephen Jay Gould Archive (sponsored by Art Science Research Laboratory): Cyber Library, Harvard Course:
! B16: History of Earth and Life. A kittenish website. Difficult to set a link, click "Stephen Jay Gould" on the right hand side. Go to:
! Lab 1: The Invertebrate Phyla,
! Lab 2: The Fossil Record,
! Lab 3: Communities through Time, and
! Lab 4: Variation and Evolution (PDF files). See also:
B16: History of Earth and Life, Source Books.
These expired links are now available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

S.R. Gradstein and H. Kerp (2012): A Brief History of Plants on Earth. Google books, The Geologic Time Scale 2012. See also here (Table of contents, Elsevier).

L.E. Graham (2019): Digging deeper: why we need more Proterozoic algal fossils and how to get them. Free access, Journal of phycology, 55: 1–6.

J. Gray and W. Shear (1992): Early life on land. In PDF, American Scientist.

! S.F. Greb et al. (2022): Prehistoric Wetlands. PDF file, p. 23-32. In: T. Mehner and K. Tockner (eds.): Encyclopedia of Inland Waters.
! Note figure 3: Wetlands through time (data are based on flora and fauna). Highlights in the evolution of wetlands.

C.T. Griffin et al. (2022): Africa’s oldest dinosaurs reveal early suppression of dinosaur distribution. Abstract, Nature.
See also: here.
"... By the Late Triassic (Carnian stage, ~235 million years ago), cosmopolitan ‘disaster faunas’ had given way to highly endemic assemblages on the supercontinent.
[...] palaeolatitudinal climate belts, and not continental boundaries, are proposed to have controlled distribution. During this time of high endemism ..."

N. Griffis et al. (2023): A Carboniferous apex for the late Paleozoic icehouse. In PDF, Geological Society, London, Special Publications, 535.
See as well here.
"... The Late Paleozoic Ice Age (LPIA) was the most extreme and longest lasting glaciation of the Phanerozoic
[...] A definitive driver for greenhouse gases in the LPIA, such as abundant and sustained volcanic activity or an increased biological pump driven by ocean fertilization, is unresolved for this period ..."

! S.B. Hedges and S. Kumar (2009): Discovering the Timetree of Life. PDF file, In: S.B. Hedges and S. Kumar (eds.): The Timetree of Life.
! See here.
These expired links are now available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! S.B. Hedges (2009): Life. PDF file, In: S.B. Hedges and S. Kumar (eds.): The Timetree of Life.
! See here.
These expired links are now available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! J.B. Hedges (2004): A molecular timescale of eukaryote evolution and the rise of complex multicellular life. BMC evolutionary biology.

! hhmi BioInteractive (The Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI)).
BioInteractive is a leading provider of free classroom resources and professional development for high school and undergraduate biology educators.
! EarthViewer. This interactive module allows to explore the science of Earth's deep history, from its formation 4.5 billion years ago to modern times. Excellent!

! M.F. Hohmann-Marriott and R.E. Blankenship (2011): Evolution of Photosynthesis. In PDF, Annual Review of Plant Biology, 62: 515-548.
See also here.
Note figure 2: Evolution of life and photosynthesis in geological context, highlighting the emergence of groups of photosynthetic organisms.

S.M. Holland (2016): The non-uniformity of fossil preservation. In PDF, Phil. Trans. R. Soc., B 371. See also here (abstract).

S.B. Hedges and S. Kumar (2009): Discovering the Timetree of Life. PDF file, (see here).
These expired links are now available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

S.B. Hedges (2009): Life. PDF file, In: S.B. Hedges and S. Kumar (eds.): The Timetree of Life (see here).
These expired links are now available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

Henry County Schools, McDonough, GA:
Life and Geologic Time. Reconstructions of Paleo-Landscapes.
Powerpoint presentation.

P.F. Hoffman et al. (2017): Snowball Earth climate dynamics and Cryogenian geology-geobiology. In PDF, Science Advances, 3. See also here.

B. Holgado and M. Suñer (2018): Palaeodiversity and evolution in the Mesozoic world. In PDF, Journal of Iberian Geology, 44: 1–5. See also here.

D. Jablonski and S.M. Edie (2023): Perfect storms shape biodiversity in time and space. Free access, Evolutionary Journal of the Linnean Society, 2.
"... Many of the most dramatic patterns in biological diversity are created by “Perfect Storms” —rare combinations of mutually reinforcing factors that push origination, extinction, or diversity accommodation to extremes. These patterns include the strongest diversification events [...] This approach necessarily weighs contributing factors, identifying their often non-linear and time-dependent interactions ..."

D. Jablonski and N.H. Shubin (2015): The future of the fossil record: Paleontology in the 21st century. In PDF, PNAS, see also here.

! D. Jablonski (2007): Scale and hierarchy in macroevolution. PDF file, Palaeontology, 50: 87-109.

D. Jablonski (2008): Biotic interactions and macroevolution: extensions and mismatches across scales and levels. PDF file, Evolution, 62: 715-739.

David Jablonski, Department of Geophysical Sciences, University of Chicago (hosted by aics research, inc., Lecture of the Week, Lectures and Conferences recorded in QCShow format): Part I: Planetary-scale Patterns; The Dynamics of Global Biodiversity: Insights from the Fossil Record. Lecture, 35 min., requires QCShow Player. Snapshot taken by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

David Jablonski, Committee on Evolutionary Biology, Division of Biological Sciences, University of Chicago: The interplay of physical and biotic factors in macroevolution. PDF file, In: A. Lister and L. Rothschild, eds., Evolution on Planet Earth: The impact of the physical environment. New York: Academic Press, 235-252; 2003.

! J.B.C. Jackson and D.H. Erwin (2006): What can we learn about ecology and evolution from the fossil record? PDF file, Trends in Ecology and Evolution.
See also here.

J.B.C. Jackson and K.G. Johnson (2001): Measuring Past Biodiversity. In PDF, Science, 293.
See likewise here.

E.J. Javaux and K. Lepot (2018): The Paleoproterozoic fossil record: Implications for the evolution of the biosphere during Earth's middle-age. Free access, Earth-Science Reviews, 176: 68-86.

Daniel Jeffares and Anthony Poole (an original article):
Were Bacteria the First Forms of Life on Earth?. In PDF.
Human cells can reveal evolutionary history because they contain molecular fossils, exhibit mechanisms that were in development when life began, and indicate that ancient organisms may be more complex than first thought.
Still available via Internet Archive Wayback Machine.

J.A. Karr and M.E. Clapham (2015): Taphonomic biases in the insect fossil record: shifts in articulation over geologic time. In PDF, Paleobiology.

J.F. Kasting and J.L. Siefert (2002): Life and the evolution of Earth´s atmosphere. Abstract, Science.

! M. Alan Kazlev et al.: Palaeos. A website about the history of life on Earth. Snapshot taken by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine. Go to: Earth History.

B.P. Kear et al. (2016): An introduction to the Mesozoic biotas of Scandinavia and its Arctic territories. In PDF.

M. Kearney (2002): Fragmentary taxa, missing data, and ambiguity: mistaken assumptions and conclusions. PDF file, Systematic biology, 51: 369-381.

! P. Kenrick et al. (2012): A timeline for terrestrialization: consequences for the carbon cycle in the Palaeozoic. In PDF, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B, 367: 519-536.
Website saved by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

H. Kerp and M. Krings (2023): The Early Devonian Rhynie chert–The world's oldest and most complete terrestrial ecosystem. PDF file, starting on PDF page 44. In: J. Reitner, M. Reich, J.-P. Duda (eds.): Abstracts, Fossillagerstätten and Taphonomy.

S.M. Kidwell (2013): Time-averaging and fidelity of modern death assemblages: building a taphonomic foundation for conservation palaeobiology. Free access, Palaeontology, 56: 487–522.

! S.M. Kidwell and S.M. Holland (2002): The Quality of the Fossil Record: Implications for Evolutionary Analyses. PDF file, Annual Review of Ecology and Systematics, 33: 561-588. See also here.

Susan M. Kidwell and Karl W. Flessa: THE QUALITY OF THE FOSSIL RECORD: Populations, Species, and Communities.- Annu. Rev. Earth Planet. Sci. 1996 24: 433-464. Full Online Access via Annual Reviews, Go to Annual Reviews Search Page (Biomedical Sciences), Search for "Kidwell" (Field Author, Last Name).

A.V. Khramov et al. (2023): The earliest pollen-loaded insects from the Lower Permian of Russia. In PDF, Biol. Lett., 19: 20220523.
See also here.
Note figure 2k: Artistic reconstruction of female Tillyardembia feeding on Pechorostrobus pollen organ (Rufloriaceae).

! A.H. Knoll and M.A. Nowak (2017): The timetable of evolution. Free access, Science Advances, 3.
Note fig. 1: The evolutionary timetable, showing the course of evolution as inferred from fossils, environmental proxies, and high-resolution geochronology.

! A.H. Knoll and K.J. Niklas (1987): Adaptation, plant evolution, and the fossil record. Free access, Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology, 50: 127-149.

A.H. Knoll and M.J. Follows (2016): A bottom-up perspective on ecosystem change in Mesozoic oceans. In PDF, Proc. R. Soc., B, 283: 20161755. See also here.

! A.H. Knoll (2013): Systems Paleobiology. In PDF, Geological Society of America Bulletin, 125. About paleobiology and its important role in understanding how the Earth system works.

K. Koldas (2021): Charred Fossils Provide Clues about Early Terrestrialization. ColbyNews.

M. Kowalewski and R.K. Bambach (2008): The limits of paleontological resolution. In PDF, High-resolution approaches in stratigraphic paleontology. This expired link is available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

P. Kumar et al. (2023): How plants conquered land: evolution of terrestrial adaptation. Open access, Journal of Evolutionary Biology, 35: 5–14.
"... The transition of plants from water to land is considered one of the most significant events in the evolution of life
[...] This study highlights the morphological and genomic innovations that allow plants to integrate life on Earth ..."

! C.C. Labandeira (2018, starting on PDF page 65): The global transition from a Mesozoic-aspect to a post-Mesozoic-aspect world: major patterns of ecological and evolutionary change in plant–insect interactions. Abstract, 13th Symposium on Mesozoic Terrestrial Ecosystems and Biota, Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn, Germany. In: Terra Nostra, 2018/1.

! C.C. Labandeira and J.J. Sepkoski (1993): Insect diversity in the fossil record. PDF file, Science, 26: 310-315.
See also here.

J. Laurie et al. (2009): Living Australia (in PDF). Earth history in Australia.

! Michel Laurin (2012): Recent progress in paleontological methods for dating the Tree of Life. In PDF, Frontiers in Genetics, 3.

! F. Leliaert et al. (2011): Into the deep: new discoveries at the base of the green plant phylogeny. PDF file, BioEssays. 33: 683-692. See also here.
! Note figure 1: Phylogenetic relationships among the main lineages of green plants.
"... A schism early in their evolution gave rise to two major lineages, one of which diversified in the world’s oceans and gave rise to a large diversity of marine and freshwater green algae (Chlorophyta) while the other gave rise to a diverse array of freshwater green algae and the land plants (Streptophyta) ..."

T.M. Lenton et al. (2016): Earliest land plants created modern levels of atmospheric oxygen. Free access, PNAS, 113.

! T.M. Lenton and S.J. Daines (2016): Matworld - the biogeochemical effects of early life on land. In PDF, New Phytologist.

! T.J. Lepore et al. (2023): The impact of field experiences in paleontology on high school learners. In PDF, Journal of Geoscience Education. DOI: 10.1080/10899995.2023.2175525.
See also here.

! K. Lepot (2020): Signatures of early microbial life from the Archean (4 to 2.5 Ga) eon. Free access, Earth-Science Reviews, 209. See also here.

Harold L. Levin, Washington University:
The Earth Through Time, Seventh Edition (provided by Wiley, Higher Education). This textbook provides rich, authoritative coverage of the history of the Earth, offering the most comprehensive history in the discipline today. Some sample chapters: Chapter 1,
! Introduction to Earth History (PDF file). Including geohistorical reflections about Abraham Gottlob Werner, James Hutton, William Smith, Georges Cuvier and Alexandre Brongniart, etc.

Harold L. Levin, Washington University, St. Louis: The Earth Through Time. Book announcement. Go to: Seventh Edition, Chapter 12, Life of the Mesozoic. Website by Pamela J. W. Gore, Georgia Perimeter College, Clarkston, GA.

! C.V. Looy et al. (2014): The late Paleozoic ecological-evolutionary laboratory, a land-plant fossil record perspective. In PDF, The Sedimentary Record, 12: 4-18. See also here.

! R. López-Antoñanzas et al. (2022): Integrative Phylogenetics: Tools for Palaeontologists to Explore the Tree of Life. Open access, Biology, 11: 1185. biology11081185.
"... The statistical techniques mentioned above have only begun to be applied to questions in palaeontology over the past decade but have found extensive applications in phylogenetic comparative analysis, quantitative genetics, and ecology. Complementary methodologies that combine morphological and molecular approaches can provide novel answers to broad evolutionary and deep-time questions ..."

C.C. Loron et al. (2019): Early fungi from the Proterozoic era in Arctic Canada. Abstract, Nature, 570: 232–235. See also here (in PDF), and there (review, in German).

A.C. Love et al. (2022): Evolvability in the fossil record. Free access, Paleobiology, 48: 186–209.

S.G. Lucas (2023): Permophiles Perspective: Nonmarine Permian Biostratigraphy, Biochronology and Correlation. In PDF, Permophiles.
Note figure 1: Map of Pangea at 270 Ma.

S. Lucas and A. Hunt (2023): There was no Mesozoic marine revolution. In PDF, Proceedings, 87.
See also here.

S.G. Lucas (2023): Cladistics and Stratigraphy. Open access, Geosciences, 13.

S.G. Lucas (2021): Nonmarine Mass Extinctions. Paleontological Research 25: 329-344. See also here.

T.W. Lyons et al. (2021): Oxygenation, Life, and the Planetary System during Earth's Middle History: An Overview. Open access, Astrobiology, 21.
Note figure 1: Eukaryotic microfossil diversity through time.
Figure 3: Evolution of Earth’s atmospheric oxygen content through time.

! S Magallón et al. (2013): Land plant evolutionary timeline: gene effects are secondary to fossil constraints in relaxed clock estimation of age and substitution rates. Free access, American Journal of Botany, 100: 556-573.

! P.D. Mannion et al. (2014): The latitudinal biodiversity gradient through deep time. Free access, Trends in Ecology &&xnbsp;Evolution, 29: 42-50.
"... Deep-time studies indicate that a tropical peak and poleward decline in species diversity has not been a persistent pattern throughout the Phanerozoic, but is restricted to intervals of the Palaeozoic and the past 30 million years. A tropical peak might characterise cold icehouse climatic regimes, whereas warmer greenhouse regimes display temperate diversity peaks or flattened gradients. ..."
Note figure 3: The Late Cretaceous dinosaur latitudinal biodiversity gradient.
! Figure 4: The latitudinal biodiversity gradient (LBG) through the Phanerozoic.

A.O. Marron et al. (2016): The Evolution of Silicon Transport in Eukaryotes. In PDF, Mol. Biol. Evol. See also here.

! W.F. Martin and J.F. Allen (2018): An algal greening of land. Free access, Cell, 174: 256-258. See also here.
Note figure 1: Streptophyte Algae and the Rise of Atmospheric Oxygen.

! E. Martinetto et al. (2018): Worldwide temperate forests of the Neogene: Never more diverse? Abstract, in PDF. 10th European Palaeobotany and Palynology Conference, University College Dublin, Ireland.
See also here.

C.R. Marshall (2019): Using the Fossil Record to Evaluate Timetree Timescales. Open access, Front Genet., 10.

! Department of Geology, University of Maryland:
A Brief History of Life on Earth.
Lecture notes, Powerpoint presentation. From: Barbara W. Murck and Brian J. Skinner, chapter 15: "Geology Today: Understanding Our Planet: Physical Geology Today".

! W.J. Matthaeus et al. (2023): A systems approach to understanding how plants transformed Earth's environment in deep time. Free access, Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences, 51: 551-580.
"... For hundreds of millions of years, plants have been a keystone in maintaining the status of Earth’s atmosphere, oceans, and climate
[...] Extinct plants have functioned differently across time, limiting our understanding of how processes on Earth interact to produce climate ..."
Note figure 1: Schematic of the trait-based whole-plant functional-strategy approach applied to late Paleozoic extinct plants.
Figure 3: Chart illustrating the Paleo-BGC modeling process (White et al., 2020) from inputs of fossil-inferred plant functional traits and environmental parameters to output.
Figure 5: Temporal distribution of late Paleozoic tropical biomes and atmospheric composition.
Figure 8: Schematic diagram presenting the information used to reconstruct and interpret time-appropriate vegetation-climate interactions.

P.J. Mayhew et al. (2008): A long-term association between global temperature and biodiversity, origination and extinction in the fossil record. In PDF, Proc Biol Sci., 275: 47-53.

! R.M. McCourt et al. (2023): Green land: Multiple perspectives on green algal evolution and the earliest land plants. In PDF, American Journal of Botany 110. See also here (Free to read).
! Note figure 1: Green plant diversification in the context of the fossil record.
"... Green plants, broadly defined as green algae and the land plants (together, Viridiplantae), constitute the primary eukaryotic lineage that successfully colonized Earth's emergent landscape.
[...] We present the process not as a step-by-step advancement from primitive green cells to an inevitable success of embryophytes, but rather as a process of adaptations and exaptations that allowed multiple clades of green plants ..."

G.R. McGhee et al. (2013): A new ecological-severity ranking of major Phanerozoic biodiversity crises. In PDF, Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 370: 260-270.

S. McLoughlin and B.P. Kear (2014): Gondwanan Mesozoic biotas and bioevents. Abstract.

Space Physics Research Laboratory, Department of Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space Sciences, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor: GLOBAL CHANGE I. The University of Michigan's Global Change Curriculum offers an innovative approach in undergraduate science and social science education as part of the Program in the Environment. In three interdisciplinary, team-taught courses the topic of Global Change from physical and human perspectives are examined. The courses are aimed at first and second year students who want to understand the historical and modern aspects of Global Change. Go to: Emergence of Complex Life; The Fossil Record; Punctuated Equilibrium (Allan).

L. Miao et al. (2024): 1.63-billion-year-old multicellular eukaryotes from the Chuanlinggou Formation in North China Science Advances, 10. DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.adk3208. See also here.
! Note figure 8: Overview of early evolution of the Eukarya along with fossil records.
"... we report cellularly preserved multicellular microfossils (Qingshania magnifica) from the ~1635-million-year-old Chuanlinggou Formation, North China. The fossils consist of large uniseriate, unbranched filaments with cell diameters up to 190 micrometers; spheroidal structures, possibly spores, occur within some cells ..."

! D.B. Mills et al. (2022): Eukaryogenesis and oxygen in Earth history. In PDF, Nature Ecology & Evolution, 6: 520–532. See also here.
Note especially: Fig. 3: Correlated fossil, molecular and geochemical timeline.
"... these results temporally, spatially and metabolically decouple the earliest stages of eukaryogenesis from the oxygen content of the surface ocean and atmosphere. Rather than reflecting the ancestral metabolic state, obligate aerobiosis in eukaryotes is most probably derived, having only become globally widespread over the past 1 billion years as atmospheric oxygen approached modern levels. ..."

! B.J.W. Mills et al. (2021): Spatial continuous integration of Phanerozoic global biogeochemistry and climate. Free access, Gondwana Research, 100: 73–86.

M. Moczydlowska et al. (2011): Proterozoic phytoplankton and timing of chlorophyte algae origins. Open access, Palaeontology, 54: 721–733.

K.R. Moore et al. (2022): A review of microbial-environmental interactions recorded in Proterozoic carbonate-hosted chert. Open access, Geobiology.
"... we review the record of biosignatures preserved in peritidal Proterozoic chert and chert-hosting carbonate and discuss this record in the context of experimental and environmental studies that have begun to shed light on the roles that microbes and organic compounds may have played ..."

S.J. Mojzsis et al. (1996): Evidence for life on Earth before 3,800 million years ago. In PDF, Nature, 384.

J. Murienne et al. (2015): A living fossil tale of Pangaean biogeography. In PDF, Proc. R. Soc. B, 281. See also here.

! A.D. Muscente et al. (2017): Exceptionally preserved fossil assemblages through geologic time and space. Abstract, Gondwana Research, 48: 164-188. See also here (in PDF).

! NASA Astrobiology Institute:
What are Microbial Mats? Still available via Internet Archive Wayback Machine.
What are Stromatolites?
See also: Microbial Mats Offer Clues To Life on Early Earth. Worth checking out:
! Life in the Extremes.

! NATURE, Nature Debates: Andrew Smith, Department of Palaeontology, the Natural History Museum, London: Is the fossil record adequate? This debate introduces the topic and the conflicting viewpoints that surround it.

Henry Alleyne Nicholson (1876): The Ancient Life History of the Earth. A Project Gutenberg EBook. Including some line drawings of plants.

! Y. Nie et al. (2020): Accounting for uncertainty in the evolutionary timescale of green plants through clock-partitioning and fossil calibration strategies. In PDF, Syst. Biol., 69: 1–16. See also here.
! Note figure 5: Time-tree of green plants.
! "... By taking into account various sources of uncertainty, we estimate that crown-group green plants originated in the Paleoproterozoic–Mesoproterozoic (1679.7–1025.6 Ma), crown-group Chlorophyta and Streptophyta originated in the Mesoproterozoic–Neoproterozoic (1480.0–902.9 Ma and 1571.8–940.9 Ma), and crown-group land plants originated in the Ediacaran to middle Ordovician (559.3– 459.9 Ma). ..."

! K.J. Niklas (2023): Deciphering the hidden complexity of early land plant reproduction. Free access, New Phytologist.

! K.J. Niklas (2015): Measuring the tempo of plant death and birth. Open access, New Phytologist.

! N. Noffke et al. (2013): Microbially Induced Sedimentary Structures Recording an Ancient Ecosystem in the ca. 3.48 Billion-Year-Old Dresser Formation, Pilbara, Western Australia. Astrobiology, 13: 1103–1124.

W.R. Norris, Department of Natural Sciences, Western New Mexico University, Silver City, NM:
The Challenges of Life on Land. Lecture notes, powerpoint presentation. See also here (in PDF).

! L.R. Novick et al. Depicting the tree of life in museums: guiding principles from psychological research. In PDF, see also here.

P. Olsen et al. (2022): Arctic ice and the ecological rise of the dinosaurs. Open access, Sci. Adv., 8.
See also: Frost ebnete Dinosauriern den Weg. In German, by Nadja Podbregar, Scinexx, July 04, 2022.

! S.L. Olson et al. (2018): Earth: Atmospheric Evolution of a Habitable Planet. PDF file, In: Deeg H., Belmonte J. (eds.) Handbook of Exoplanets. Springer. See also here.
Worth checking out: Figure 2, co-evolution of life and surface environments on Earth.

! Wolfgang Oschmann, Department of Geoscience, Goethe-University, Frankfurt am Main, Germany: The Evolution of the Atmosphere of our Planet Earth. In PDF. About the the origin of earth and the early atmosphere, the role of biosphere and the carbon-cycle and the atmospheric evolution through time.

W. Oschmann (2006): Evolution und Sterben der Dinosaurier. In PDF, Nova Acta Leopoldina NF 93, 345, 117-143. PDF file, in German.

W. Oschmann, Department of Geoscience, Goethe-University, Frankfurt am Main, Germany: Paläontologie - Eine Zeitreise. Phasen der Evolution des Systems Erde: Es gibt keinen Stillstand (in German).

Geobiology, Department of Earth Sciences, Oxford University: Questioning the evidence for Earth's oldest fossils.
Now provided by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! K. Padian et al. (1994): Cladistics and the fossil record: the uses of history. In PDF, Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences, 22: 63-89.
See also here.

! The Paleobiology Database (PBDB).
PBDB is a public database of paleontological data that anyone can use, maintained by an international non-governmental group of paleontologists. The Paleobiology Database has been supported by many grants over the years, mostly from the National Science Foundation. You may navigate from the
Paleobiology Database Guest Menu or check out the
Frequently Asked Questions. Please also note the detailed and excellent tutorial:
! M.D. Uhen et al. (2023): Paleobiology Database User Guide Version 1.0 Free access, PaleoBios, 40: 1-56. See also here (in PDF).

! Palaeontologia Electronica: Fossil Calibration Database. The Fossil Calibration Database is a curated collection of well-justified calibrations. They also promote best practices for justifying fossil calibrations and citing calibrations properly. Raising the Standard in Fossil Calibration! See also:
D.T. Ksepka et al. (2015): The Fossil Calibration Database, A New Resource for Divergence Dating. Abstract, Systematic Biology.

J.F. Parham et al. (2012): Best Practices for Justifying Fossil Calibrations. In PDF, Syst Biol., 61: 346-359. See also here (abstract).

J.L. Payne et al. (2020): The evolution of complex life and the stabilization of the Earth system. Open access, Interface Focus, 10: 20190106.

Peabody Museum of Natural History, Yale University:
Geologic Time Scale. Powerpoint presentation.

M.W. Pennell et al. (2014): Is there room for punctuated equilibrium in macroevolution? Trends in ecology & evolution, 29: 23-32.
See also here.

College of Earth and Mineral Sciences, Pennsylvania State University.
! The Origin and Evolution of Life on Earth. Lecture notes, Powerpoint presentation.

! D. Peris and F.L. Condamine (2023): The dual role of the angiosperm radiation on insect diversification. Free access, bioRxiv.
See also here.
"... We found that, among the six tested variables, angiosperms had a dual role that has changed through time with an attenuation of insect extinction in the Cretaceous and a driver of insect origination in the Cenozoic. ..."

! Alex L. Pigot et al. (2012): Speciation and Extinction Drive the Appearance of Directional Range Size Evolution in Phylogenies and the Fossil Record. Free access, PLoS Biol., 10: e1001260. doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.1001260
See also here.

John Pojeta and Dale A. Springer, American Geological Institute AGI, (in cooperation with the Paleontological Society): Evolution and the Fossil Record. This non-technical introduction to evolution aims to help the general public gain a better understanding of one of the fundamental underlying concepts of modern science. Discussion topics are geologic time; change through time; Darwin's theory of evolution; evolution as a mechanism for change; the nature of species; the nature of theory; paleontology, geology, and evolution; and determining the age of fossils and rocks. The Online booklet contains straightforward definitions as well as discussions of complex ideas. Navigate using the left-hand toolbar. There is also a PDF printable version available.

P. David Polly, Department of Geological Sciences, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN:
Historical Geology. Life through time. Lecture notes. Topics are paleontology, geologic time, biological evolution, plate tectonics, ancient environments, and climate change, principles of interpreting earth history from geological data, etc. Go to:
Lecture 15: Paleobiology, and
Lecture 21: Mesozoic 2: Terrestrial environments and extinction. Lecture slides (PDF files).
These expired links are now available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

S.M. Porter (2004): The fossil record of early eukaryotic diversification. In PDF, Paleontological Society Papers, 10: 35-50.
Still available via Internet Archive Wayback Machine.
See also here.
Note figure 1: A current view of eukaryote phylogeny, based on a consensus of molecular and ultrastructural data.

J. Pšenicka et al. (2021): Dynamics of Silurian plants as response to climate changes. Open access, Life, 11.
Note figure 1: Silurian time scale showing conodont and graptolite biozones, stage slices and generalized 13Ccarb curve.
Figure 2: Silurian palaeocontinental reconstructions.

C. Puginier et al. (2021): Plant–microbe interactions that have impacted plant terrestrializations. Free access, Plant Physiology.
Note figure 1: 1 Phylogenetic tree of the Viridiplantae. showing the evolution of the AMS [arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis], the putative evolutions of lichens and clades that contain LFA [lichen forming algae] and terrestrial species.
Figure 3: Lichens and their tolerance against terrestrial-related constraints.

W. Qie et al. (2023): Enhanced Continental Weathering as a Trigger for the End-Devonian Hangenberg Crisis. Open access, Geophysical Research Letters, 50: e2022GL102640.
Note figure 1A: Latest Devonian global paleogeographic reconstruction.
"... The colonization of land plants during the Devonian is believed to have played a key role in regulating Earth's climate. The initially rapid expansion of seed plants into unvegetated or sparsely vegetated uplands is considered to have caused enhanced rock dissolution relative to clay formation on end-Devonian continents ..."

T.B. Quental, C.R. Marshall (2010): Diversity dynamics: molecular phylogenies need the fossil record. In PDF, Trends in Ecology & Evolution, 25: 434-441.
See also here.

C.M.Ø. Rasmussen et al. (2017): Onset of main Phanerozoic marine radiation sparked by emerging Mid Ordovician icehouse. Sci. Rep., 6.

S. Ratti et al. (2011): Did Sulfate Availability Facilitate the Evolutionary Expansion of Chlorophyll a+c Phytoplankton in the Oceans? In PDF, Geobiology 9, no. 4: 301–312. See also here (abstract).

! J.A. Raven (2018): How long have photosynthetic organisms been aggregating soils? Free access, New Phytologist, 219: 1139–1141.

R.R. Reisz and J. Müller (2004): Molecular timescales and the fossil record: a paleontological perspective. In PDF, Trends in Genetics.

Joachim Reitner, Yang Qun, Wang Yongdong and Mike Reich (eds., 2013): Palaeobiology and Geobiology of Fossil Lagerstätten through Earth History. In PDF, See also here. Abstract Volume. A Joint Conference of the "Paläontologische Gesellschaft" and the "Palaeontological Society of China", Göttingen, Germany, September 23-27, 2013. See also there.

S.A. Rensing (2018): Great moments in evolution: the conquest of land by plants. Abstract, Current opinion in plant biology, 2018
"... Most probably, filamentous freshwater algae adapted to aerial conditions and eventually conquered land.
[...] In the past few years, the ever increasing availability of genomic and transcriptomic data of organisms representing the earliest common ancestors of the plant tree of life has much informed our understanding of the conquest of land by plants ..."

G.J. Retallack (2021): Great moments in plant evolution. See also here (in PDF).
Please notice figure 1.

G.J. Retallack (2013): Ediacaran life on land. In PDF, Nature, 493: 89–92.
See also here (Spaceref), and there Xiao et al. (2014).

J.D. Richey et al. (2021): Modeled physiological mechanisms for observed changes in the late Paleozoic plant fossil record. Abstract, Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 562.
"... (1) The existence of pCO2 and precipitation thresholds for loss of physiological viability that provide a mechanism for replacement of wet-adapted lycopsids and medullosans by marattialean tree ferns, which were tolerant of periodic drought, and the subsequent dominance of seasonally dry-adapted cordaitaleans and conifers. ...
(2) Under drier conditions, the combination of higher drought tolerance and primary productivity for marattialean tree ferns, conifers, and cordaitaleans provided an ecophysiological advantage over lycopsids and medullosans. ...
although the shift to more drought-tolerant plants in the Late Pennsylvanian and early Permian could have led to increased biomass and surface runoff, their ability to affect climate was likely limited by aridity and changes in vegetation density. ..."

! Mark Ridley (2004): Evolution (Third edition). In PDF. 786 pages, Blackwell Publishing company. See likewise here (Google books), or there.
Note especially:
Chapter 1.3, "A short history of evolutionary biology", Start at PDF-page 33.
! Part 5, Macroevolution. Chapter 18, "The History of Life", Start at PDF-page 558.
About plant evolution note:
Chapter 3, "The Evidence for Evolution", Start at PDF-page 43.
Chapter 14, "Speciation", Start at PDF-page 416.
Chapter 19, "Evolutionary Genomics", Start at PDF-page 591.

! R.A. Rohde and R.A. Muller (2005): Cycles in Fossil Diversity. In PDF, Nature, 434, 208-210. See also here and there (abstract).

! A. Rojas et al: (2021): A multiscale view of the Phanerozoic fossil record reveals the three major biotic transitions. Open access, Communications Biology, 4.
"... we demonstrate that Phanerozoic oceans sequentially harbored four global benthic mega-assemblages. Shifts in dominance patterns among these global marine mega-assemblages were abrupt (end-Cambrian 494 Ma; end- Permian 252 Ma) or protracted (mid-Cretaceous 129 Ma), and represent the three major biotic transitions in Earth’s history. ..."

M. Romano (2015): Reviewing the term uniformitarianism in modern Earth sciences. In PDF, Earth-Science Reviews, 148: 65–76.
See likewise here.

C. Román-Palacios et al. (2022): The origins of global biodiversity on land, sea and freshwater. In PDF, Ecology letters, 25: 1376-1386.
See also here.
"... Most plant and animal species are terrestrial, although these habitats cover only ~28% of Earth's surface.
[...] Freshwater habitats have relatively high richness and exceptional phylogenetic diversity given their tiny area (2%). ..."
[...] most marine species are descended from marine ancestors and most terrestrial species from freshwater ancestors. ..."

! C.V. Rubinstein and V. Vajda (2019): Baltica cradle of early land plants? Oldest record of trilete spores and diverse cryptospore assemblages; evidence from Ordovician successions of Sweden. Free access, GFF, DOI: 10.1080/11035897.2019.1636860.

! B.R. Ruhfel et al. (2014): From algae to angiosperms - inferring the phylogeny of green plants (Viridiplantae) from 360 plastid genomes. In PDF, BMC Evolutionary Biology, 14. See also here.

J. Rust (2007): Die Bedeutung von Fossilien für phylogenetische Rekonstruktionen. In German (PDF file). Go to PDF page 75. In: Species, Phylogeny and Evolution, Phylogenetisches Symposium Göttingen. Snapshot taken by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! M.A. Salamon et al. (2018): Putative Late Ordovician land plants. Free Access, New Phytologist, 218: 1305–1309.

! T. Salles et al. (2023): Landscape dynamics and the Phanerozoic diversification of the biosphere. Free access, Nature, 624: 115–121.
Note figure 1: Physiographic evolution and associated patterns of erosion–deposition across the Phanerozoic.
Figure 4: Continental sediment deposition and physiographic complexity, and diversity of vascular plants, during the Phanerozoic.
"... we couple climate and plate tectonics models to numerically reconstruct the evolution of the Earth’s landscape over the entire Phanerozoic eon, which we then compare to palaeodiversity datasets from marine animal and land plant genera. Our results indicate that biodiversity is strongly reliant on landscape dynamics
[...] On land, plant expansion was hampered by poor edaphic conditions until widespread endorheic basins resurfaced continents with a sedimentary cover that facilitated the development of soil-dependent rooted flora ..."

S. Schachat et al. (2023): Vegetational change during the Middle–Late Pennsylvanian transition in western Pangaea. Abstract, Geological Society, London, Special Publications, 535: 337-359.
"... Results indicate no substantive taxonomic turnover across the boundary. This stands in marked contrast to patterns in mid-Pangaean coal basins where there is a large wetland vegetational turnover.
[...] immediately following the boundary in New Mexico, and for approximately half of the Missourian Stage, floras previously dominated by hygromorphs become overwhelmingly dominated by mesomorphic/xeromorphic taxa ..."

H. Schneider (2007): Plant morphology as the cornerstone to the integration of fossil and extant taxa in phylogenetic systematics. In PDF, go to PDF page 65. In: Species, Phylogeny and Evolution, Phylogenetisches Symposium Göttingen. Snapshot taken by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! J.W. Schopf et al. (2007): Evidence of Archean life: Stromatolites and microfossils. In PDF, Precambrian Research, 158: 141-155.
See also here.

J.W. Schopf, Department of Earth and Space Sciences, the Molecular Biology Institute, and the Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics (IGPP), University of California, Los Angeles: Cradle of Life: The Discovery of Earth's Earliest Fossils.
Still available via Internet Archive Wayback Machine.
Go to: Chapter 1: Darwin's Dilemma, and Chapter 2: Birth of a New Field of Science. Sample chapters, provided by Princetown University Press. Sample chapters actually have been mounted for professors' convenience in evaluating books for class use.
See also: Just pure chemistry? (by Dagmar Röhrlich, Deutschlandfunk). New discussions about the oldest fossils (in German).

! M. Schreiber et al. (2022): The greening ashore. Free access, Trends in Plant Science.
"... Two decisive endosymbiotic events, the emergence of eukaryotes followed by the further incorporation of a photosynthesizing cyanobacterium, laid the foundation for the development of plant life. ..."

! A.C. Scott (1984): The early history of life on land. In PDF, Journal of Biological Education, 18. See also here.
Note figs. 5 and 6: Rconstructions of Silurian and Devonian plants.

! A.W.R. Seddon et al. (2014): Looking forward through the past: identification of 50 priority research questions in palaeoecology. In PDF, Journal of Ecology, 102: 256-267. See also here.

! P.A. Selden (2016): Land Animals, Origins of. In PDF. In: Kliman, R. M. (ed.): Encyclopedia of evolutionary biology. Volume 2: 288-295. Oxford, Academic Press.
About the colonization of the land habitat from the sea by plants and animals.

M.-A. Selosse et al. (2015): Plants, fungi and oomycetes: a 400-million year affair that shapes the biosphere. New Phytologist. 10th New Phytologist Workshop on the "Origin and evolution of plants and their interactions with fungi", London, UK, September 2014.

! J.J. Sepkoski (1998): Rates of speciation in the fossil record. In PDF, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London, B, 353: 315-326.

T. Servais et al. (2023): No (Cambrian) explosion and no (Ordovician) event: A single long-term radiation in the early Palaeozoic. Free access, Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 623.
Note figure 1: Overview of the major terminologies used in studies of early Palaeozoic (Cambrian, Ordovician, Silurian) biodiversity, including the Cambrian ‘Explosion’ and the Great Ordovician Biodiversification ‘Event,’ and stratigraphical position of some of the most significant Konservat-Lagerstätten.
Figure 3: Early Palaeozoic species richness curves of the three major biostratigraphical groups.

S. Shen et al. (2022): How to Build a High-Resolution Digital Geological Timeline?. In PDF, Journal of Earth Science, 33: 1629-1632.

G.R. Shi and J.B. Waterhouse (2010): Late Palaeozoic global changes affecting high-latitude environments and biotas: an introduction. Abstract, Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 298: 1-16. See also here (in PDF).

! P.W. Signor III and J.H. Lipps (1982): Sampling bias, gradual extinction patterns and catastrophes in the fossil record. In PDF, Geological Society of America. This expired link is available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! D. Silvestro et al. (2015): Revisiting the origin and diversification of vascular plants through a comprehensive Bayesian analysis of the fossil record. In PDF, New Phytologist, 207: 425-436.

South Carolina Geological Survey.
Education and Outreach. Downloadable Earth Science Education presentations, posters, and handouts. Go to:
Geologic Time and Earth’s Biological History. Powerpoint presentation. Also available in PDF.

E.A. Sperling et al. (2022): Breathless through Time: Oxygen and Animals across Earth’s History. Free access, The Biological Bulletin, 243.
Note figure 1: The four broad stages of atmospheric oxygen and life through Earth history, with oxygen in log scale as percent of present atmospheric levels (% PAL).
Figure 5: Reconstructed marine animal biodiversity dynamics and atmospheric oxygen through the Phanerozoic.
Figure 7: The chronology of the worst mass extinction in Earth history.

V. Storch et al. (2001): Entfaltung der Organismen in der Erdgeschichte. PDF file, In German. In: Evolutionsbiologie, pp 61–181. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg.
See likewise here.

! E. Strickson et al. (2016): Dynamics of dental evolution in ornithopod dinosaurs. In PDF, Scientific Reports, 6. See also here (abstract).

P.K. Strother et al. (2021): A possible billion-year-old holozoan with differentiated multicellularity. Open access, Current Biology, 31: 2658-2665.e2

Paul K. Strother, Weston Observatory of Boston College, Department of Geology & Geophysics, Weston: Origin and Evolution of Life on Planet Earth.
This course is being designed to use the www in lieu of a textbook. To use this website most effectively, go to the lecture notes and click on a specific lecture topic. This will bring up lecture notes or a content outline (if available) and additional www links to specific topics covered in the course lecture.
Website now publicly accessible by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! C. Strullu-Derrien et al. (2018): The origin and evolution of mycorrhizal symbioses: from palaeomycology to phylogenomics. Free access, New Phytologist, 220: 1012–1030.
! Note figure 1: Geological timescale with oldest known fossils. Left: Antiquity of genomic traits related to mycorrhizal evolution based on molecular clock estimates. Right: Oldest known fossils.
Figure 5: Simplified phylogenetic tree showing the minimum stratigraphic ranges of selected groups based on fossils (thick bars) and their minimum implied range extensions (thin lines).

C. Strullu-Derrien (2014): The earliest wood and its hydraulic properties documented in c. 407-million-year-old fossils using synchrotron microtomography. Abstract, Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society, 175: 423-437.

D. Su et al. (2022): Large-scale phylogenomic analyses reveal the monophyly of bryophytes and neoproterozoic origin of land plants Open access, Molecular Biology and Evolution, 38: 3332–3344.
! Note figure 1: The concatenation species tree of land plants and their algal relatives.
! Figure 2: The coalescent species tree of land plants and their algal relatives.
"... We found that studies favoring a Neoproterozoic origin of land plants (980–682 Ma) are informed more by molecular data whereas those favoring a Phanerozoic origin (518–500 Ma) are informed more by fossil constraints. Our divergence time analyses highlighted the important contribution of the molecular data (time-dependent molecular change) when faced with contentious fossil evidence.
[..] A careful integration of fossil and molecular evidence will revolutionize our understanding of how land plants evolved.

! Roger Summons and Tanja Bosak, MIT Opencourseware, Massachusetts Institute of Technology: Geobiology. An introduction about the parallel evolution of life and the environment. Life processes are influenced by chemical and physical processes in the atmosphere, hydrosphere, cryosphere and the solid earth. In turn, life can influence chemical and physical processes on our planet. This course explores the concept of life as a geological agent and examines the interaction between biology and the earth system during the roughly 4 billion years since life first appeared. Go to:
Lecture Notes. See especially: Theories Pertaining to the Origin of Life. In PDF.

Der Tagesspiegel: Anthropozän - Fallout und Plastik markieren das Menschenzeitalter. In German, Ralf Nestler, May 01, 2015.

D.W. Taylor and H. Li (2018): Paleobotany: Did flowering plants exist in the Jurassic period? eLife, 7: e43421.
"... we infer that Nanjinganthus shows substantial similarity to predicted models of ancestral characters and Early Cretaceous angiosperms, so the evidence suggests that it is a Jurassic flowering plant. ..."

T.N. Taylor et al. (2015): Fungal Diversity in the Fossil Record. In PDF, see also here (abstract).

Kenneth J. Tobin, Texas A&M International University, Laredo, Texas:
EPSC 1370 - Survey of Earth Science Lecture. Go to: Overview of Earth’s History.
Lecture notes, Powerpoint presentation.

! A.M.F. Tomescu (2021): Mysteries of the bryophyte–tracheophyte transition revealed: enter the eophytes. Free access, New Phytologist, Note fig. 1: Timeline and evolutionary hypothesis for early land plants. Worth checking out:
! D. Edwards et al. 2022a): Piecing together the eophytes–a new group of ancient plants containing cryptospores. Free access, New Phytologist, 233: 1440–1455.
! D. Edwards et al. 2022b): Earliest record of transfer cells in Lower Devonian plants. Free access, New Phytologist, 233: 1456–1465.

! A.M.F. Tomescu et al. (2016): Microbes and the fossil record: selected topics in paleomicrobiology. Abstract, in: Hurst C. (ed.) Their World: A Diversity of Microbial Environments. Advances in Environmental Microbiology, vol 1: 69-169. See also here (in PDF).

! U.S. Geological Survey, Reston, VA: Geolex. Geolex is a search tool for lithologic and geochronologic unit names.

S. Varela et al. (2015): paleobioDB: an R package for downloading, visualizing and processing data from the Paleobiology Database. In PDF, Ecography, 38: 419-425.

! G.J. Vermeij (2016): Gigantism and Its Implications for the History of Life. PLoS ONE, 11.

G.J. Vermeij (2015): Forbidden phenotypes and the limits of evolution. In PDF, Interface Focus 5: 20150028.

I. Vilovic et al. (2023): Variations in climate habitability parameters and their effect on Earth's biosphere during the Phanerozoic Eon. Open access, Scientific Reports, 13.
Note figure 5: Phanerozoic biodiversity curves.
"... We compiled environmental and biological properties of the Phanerozoic Eon from various published data sets and conducted a correlation analysis to assess variations in parameters relevant to the habitability of Earth’s biosphere
We showed that there were several periods with a highly thriving biosphere, with one even surpassing present day biodiversity and biomass. Those periods were characterized by increased oxygen levels and global runoff rates ..."

C. Wang et al. (2021): The Deep-Time Digital Earth program: data-driven discovery in geosciences. In PDF, National Science Review, 8: nwab027.
See also here.

M.J. Watson and D.M. Watson (2020): Post-Anthropocene Conservation. Open access, Trends in Ecology & Evolution.

T. Watson (2020): These bizarre ancient species are rewriting animal evolution. Nature.

C.H. Wellman et al. (2003): Fragments of the earliest land plants. In PDF, Nature, 425: 282–285.
See also here.

Helmut Weissert Geologie, ETH Zürich: Evolution der Biosphäre. Bilder aus der Erdgeschichte. PDF file, in German.
Now provided by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! N.J. Wickett et al. (2014): Phylotranscriptomic analysis of the origin and early diversification of land plants. In PDF, PNAS 111, see also here.

Wikibooks, an open content textbooks collection that anyone can edit:
History and Origin of Life.

! Wikibooks, the open-content textbooks collection: High School Earth Science.
Contributed by John Benner et al. Worth checking out:
Evidence About Earth´s Past.
Earth´s History.

Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:
! Timeline of the evolutionary history of life.

Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:
Category:Origin of life
Category:Events in the geological history of Earth
Great Oxygenation Event.
Große Sauerstoffkatastrophe (in German).

P. Wilf et al. (2023): The end-Cretaceous plant extinction: Heterogeneity, ecosystem transformation, and insights for the future. Open access, Cambridge Prisms: Extinction, 1, e14, 1–10.

! J.W. Williams and S.T. Jackson (2007): Novel climates, no-analog communities, and ecological surprises. In PDF, Front. Ecol. Environ., 5: 475-482.
The link is to a version archived by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

R. Williams (2021): Discovered: Fossilized Spores Suggestive of Early Land Plants. The Scientist.

S. Williams (2017): The Weird Growth Strategy of Earth´s First Trees. The Scientist » News & Opinion » Daily News.
"Ancient fossils reveal how woodless trees got so big: by continuously ripping apart their xylem and knitting it back together".

S. Xiao and Q. Tang (2018): After the boring billion and before the freezing millions: evolutionary patterns and innovations in the Tonian Period. In PDF, Emerging Topics in Life Sciences, 2: 161–171. See also here,

H. Xu et al. (2022): The earliest vascular land plants from the Upper Ordovician of China. In PDF, ResearchSquare, DOI:
! Note fig. 4: Phylogeny and evolutionary timescale of early plant groups, with stratigraphic ranges of several key land-dwelling characters.

Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History:
! Earth Timeline. Powerpoint presentation.
This expired link is now available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.

! H.S. Yoon et al. (2004): A molecular timeline for the origin of photosynthetic eukaryotes. PDF file, Mol. Biol. Evol., 21: 809-818. See also here.

W. Yuan et al. (2023): Mercury isotopes show vascular plants had colonized land extensively by the early Silurian. Free access, ScienceAdvances, 9; DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.ade9510.
Note figure 1: Conceptual model showing Hg cycling on Earth.
Figure 4: Critical records in Paleozoic sediments in stage/age level.
"... vascular plants were widely distributed on land during the Ordovician-Silurian transition (~444 million years), long before the earliest reported vascular plant fossil ..."

! J. Zalasiewicz et al. (2008): Are we now living in the Anthropocene? In PDF.

Z. Zhou and M.T. Antunes (2013): Terrestrial Mesozoic stratigraphy. In PDF, Ciências da Terra (UNL), 18; Lisboa. See also here.

B.N. Zepernick et al. (2023): Climate change and the aquatic continuum: A cyanobacterial comeback story. Free access, Environmental Microbiology Reports, 15: 3-12.
Note figure 1: Diagram showing the interactive environmental controls on CyanoHABs [Cyanobacterial Harmful Algal Blooms] along the freshwater-marine continuum.

V. Zimorski et al. (2019): Energy metabolism in anaerobic eukaryotes and Earth's late oxygenation. In PDF, Free Radical Biology and Medicine. See also here.
Note fig. 1: Summary of oxygen accumulation of earth history.

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