The plant macrofossil assemblage from a Rhaetian succession of a quarry near Einberg (Franconia, Germany), of which ferns, cycadophytes and ginkgophytes had been published earlier, comprises two conifer species (Schizolepidopsis liasokeuperianus and Stachyotaxus septentrionalis) that are unambiguously identifiable. Though both occur in small numbers of specimens only, a large number of specimens of the enigmatic gymnospermous foliage type Desmiophyllum harrisii were encountered; the true nature of this taxon is yet unknown, but evidence points towards a coniferalean affinity. The three species are described by means of macromorphology and epidermal characters. Finally, a large number of conifer cones have been found in the assemblage, which are attributed to three different types, viz., one ovuliferous cone belonging to and attached on a twig of Stachyotaxus septentrionalis; the microsporangiate cone Sphaerostrobus einbergensis sp. nov. and the ovuliferous cone Ourostrobus einbergensis sp. nov. – the latter two might belong to Desmiophyllum harrisii. A comparison between the flora from Einberg with the Rhaetian floras of adjacent localities (viz. Wüstenwelsberg, Heilgersdorf and Kipfendorf) reveals distinct regional differences within the conifers between the respective floras; this is most likely induced by local ecological disparities of varying habitats. Moreover, brief comparisons with Rhaetian floras from adjacent European areas are made, and with the Hettangian floras from Bavaria as well. Lastly, an overview of the complete Einberg plant fossil assemblage is given, including palaeoecology and palaeogeography of the whole area around Coburg during the Rhaetian.

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Neues Jahrbuch für Geologie und Paläontologie. Abhandlungen
Staff publications

van Konijnenburg - van Cittert, J., Schmeißner, Stefan, Dütsch, Günter, Kustatscher, Evelyn, & Pott, Christian. (2024). Plant macrofossils from the Rhaetian of Einberg near Coburg (Bavaria, Germany). Part 3. Conifers, incertae sedis and general discussion. Neues Jahrbuch für Geologie und Paläontologie. Abhandlungen, 310(3), 251–282. doi:10.1127/njgpa/2023/1182

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