Beetle Pollination of Cycads in the Mesozoic

@article{Cai2018BeetlePO,
  title={Beetle Pollination of Cycads in the Mesozoic},
  author={Chenyang Cai and Hermes E Escalona and Liqin Li and Zi-Wei Yin and Diying Huang and Michael S. Engel},
  journal={Current Biology},
  year={2018},
  volume={28},
  pages={2806-2812.e1}
}
Cycads, unlike modern wind-pollinated conifers and Ginkgo, are unusual in that they are an ancient group of gymnosperms pollinated by insects [1-3]. Although it is well documented that cycads were diverse and abundant during the mid-Mesozoic, little is known about their biogeography and pollination before the rise of angiosperms. Direct fossil evidence illuminating the evolutionary history of cycads is extremely rare [4, 5]. Here we report a specialized beetle-mediated pollination mode from the… 
Angiosperm pollinivory in a Cretaceous beetle.
TLDR
The exquisite preservation of the fossil permits the identification of the pollen grains as Tricolpopollenites (Asteridae or Rosidae), representing a record of flower beetle pollination of a group of derived angiosperms in the Mesozoic and suggesting that potentially diverse beetle lineages visited early angiosperm pollination by the mid-Cretaceous.
Insect pollination of cycads
TLDR
This review covers the history of understanding pollination in cycads, the advances that have been made since the 1980s using field observations and experiments, and analyses of molecular data from the population to phylum level to ensure inclusion in broader considerations of the role of pollinators in plant diversification.
Coleoptera in amber from Cretaceous resiniferous forests
TLDR
It is shown how beetles from Cretaceous ambers are a useful tool for studying community and trophic structures as well as evolutionary implications for the ecosystem.
Pollination of Cretaceous flowers
TLDR
Direct evidence of insect pollination of Cretaceous flowers is provided by a specialized beetle-angiosperm pollination mode preserved in Burmese amber where a tumbling flower beetle is carrying tricolpate pollen grains that belongs to the eudicots that comprise the majority of extant angiosperm species.
Direct evidence for eudicot pollen-feeding in a Cretaceous stinging wasp (Angiospermae; Hymenoptera, Aculeata) preserved in Burmese amber
TLDR
Direct evidence preserved in mid-Cretaceous Burmese amber for feeding on pollen in the eudicot genus Tricolporoidites by a basal new aculeate wasp supports the hypothesis that relatively small, generalized insect anthophiles were important pollinators of early angiosperms.
Generalist Pollen-Feeding Beetles during the Mid-Cretaceous
TLDR
It is demonstrated how a gymnosperm to angiosperm plant-host shift occurred during the mid-Cretaceous, from a generalist pollen-feeding family of beetles, which served as a driving mechanism for the subsequent success of flowering plants.
The earliest beetle with mouthparts specialized for feeding on nectar is a parasitoid of mid-Cretaceous Hymenoptera
TLDR
Evidence of the earliest occurrence of specialized nectar feeding mouthparts in Coleoptera is presented, and a new wedge-shaped beetle Melanosiagon serraticornis is described, closely related to extant Macrosiagonini.
The Ecology and Evolution of Cycads and Their Symbionts
TLDR
The gut microbial communities of five insect species feeding on a diversity of tissues of cycads and collected world-wise are surveyed, and a set of core bacteria that is shared amongst cycad herbivores and not found in their non-cycad feeding relatives are discovered.
Flowers are essential to maintain high beetle diversity (Coleoptera) in a Neotropical rainforest canopy
TLDR
It is suggested that the enormous diversity of canopy beetles in Amazonian tropical rainforests is due mainly to flowers and that mass-flowering trees with small white flowers of the generalist syndrome play a particularly crucial role in assembly and nourishment of this megadiverse beetle community.
A previously missing link in the evolution of dasytine soft‐winged flower beetles from Cretaceous Charentese amber (Coleoptera, Melyridae)
TLDR
The first representative of the Melyridae from the Mesozoic of Europe is described, from early Cenomanian Charentese (French) amber, suggesting that Dasytinae begun to diversify by the Late Cretaceous, possibly in concert with the radiation of angiosperms.
...
1
2
3
4
5
...

References

SHOWING 1-10 OF 46 REFERENCES
Pollination drops, pollen, and insect pollination of Mesozoic gymnosperms
TLDR
These data highlight the independent origin of a major phase of plant-insect pollinator-related associations during the mid Mesozoic that served as a prelude for the separate, iterative and later colonization of angiosperms.
Insect pollination in the African cycad Encephalartos friderici-guilielmi Lehm
TLDR
Data support the conclusion that E. friderici-guilielmi is insect pollinated and provide further evidence for the role of cucujoid (Erotylidae, Boganiidae) and curculionoid ( Porthetes ) beetles in the pollination of Encephalartos spp.
False Blister Beetles and the Expansion of Gymnosperm-Insect Pollination Modes before Angiosperm Dominance
TLDR
The first direct evidence is provided for one cohort, exemplified by the beetle Darwinylus marcosi, family Oedemeridae (false blister beetles), that had an earlier gymnosperm (most likely cycad) host association, later transitioning onto angiosperms [13].
Pollination ecology of the Australian cycad Lepidozamia peroffskyana (Zamiaceae)
TLDR
Multiple lines of evidence suggest that wind-once considered the only pollination vector for cycads and other gymnosperms-plays only a minimal role in the pollination of L. peroffskyana, if any at all.
Thrips pollination of Mesozoic gymnosperms
TLDR
A specialized pollination mode from Early Cretaceous amber of Spain is reported, wherein four female thrips representing a genus and two species in the family Melanthripidae were covered by abundant Cycadopites pollen grains, providing direct evidence of specialized collection and transportation of pollen grains.
Coprolites in a Middle Triassic cycad pollen cone: evidence for insect pollination in early cycads?
TLDR
This work reports the presence of pollen-laden coprolites in pollen sacs of a Middle Triassic cycad that are comparable with fecal pellets of modern arthropods and suggests that they were produced by beetles.
IN SITU GYMNOSPERM POLLEN FROM THE MIDDLE JURASSIC OF YORKSHIRE
TLDR
The morphology of pollen grains yielded by male Gymnosperm fructifications from the Jurassic flora of Yorkshire is studied and discussed and it is suggested that all members of the Hirmerella-group have an epidermis with a special type of stoma.
The last Patagonian cycad, Austrozamia stockeyi gen. et sp. nov., early Eocene of Laguna del Hunco, Chubut, Argentina1
TLDR
A large frond piece and several isolated leaflets of a compressed cycad, along with an associated spiny petiole, from the late-Gondwanan flora of Patagonia, Argentina are reported.
Leaf anatomy of a late Palaeozoic cycad
TLDR
Pinnate leaves of Plagiozamites oblongifolius Halle 1927 with well-preserved cuticles showing the epidermal anatomy are described from the upper Permian Xuanwei Formation of Yunnan Province, Southwest China.
Does pollen aerodynamics correlate with pollination vector? Pollen settling velocity as a test for wind versus insect pollination among cycads (Gymnospermae: Cycadaceae: Zamiaceae)
TLDR
Pollen aggregation during a vertical fall provides a sound test for wind versus animal pollination when the pollination vector is unknown, and is predicted to predict that cycad species on oceanic islands have insect pollinators.
...
1
2
3
4
5
...