Notes on the origin of inertinite macerals in coal: Evidence for fungal and arthropod transformations of degraded macerals

James C. Hower, Jennifer M.K. O'Keefe, Cortland F. Eble, Anne Raymond, Bruno Valentim, Thomas J. Volk, Allison R. Richardson, Anne B. Satterwhite, Rachel S. Hatch, J. D. Stucker, Michael A. Watt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

100 Scopus citations

Abstract

The role of fungus in the formation of coal macerals, both as a primary contributor in the form of a fungus fossil/maceral funginite, and in their role in degrading wood, thus producing degraded maceral forms, has been established. Fungus, in the course of breaking down the lignin and cellulose in wood, make the wood more digestible for grazers, such as arthropods. In turn, the remnants of the digested wood and anything else eaten but not completely digested are excreted and can be preserved intact; eaten by other fauna with a repeat of the cycle; or colonized by bacteria and/or coprophilous fungi with or without subsequent preservation. Ultimately, the coprolites can be preserved as a form of macrinite.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)231-240
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Coal Geology
Volume86
Issue number2-3
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2011

Keywords

  • Arthropod
  • Coprolite
  • Decomposition
  • Fungus
  • Macrinite

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Fuel Technology
  • Geology
  • Economic Geology
  • Stratigraphy

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