Articles | Volume 23, issue 1
https://doi.org/10.5194/fr-23-15-2020
https://doi.org/10.5194/fr-23-15-2020
Research article
 | 
21 Feb 2020
Research article |  | 21 Feb 2020

Sampling fossil floras for the study of insect herbivory: how many leaves is enough?

Sandra R. Schachat, S. Augusta Maccracken, and Conrad C. Labandeira

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Short summary
Insects have been feeding on plants for over 300 million years. The fossil record preserves evidence of this behavior: it is possible to examine a fossilized leaf and see the spots where insects ate it or laid their eggs in it. The study of these insect traces on leaves shows us how insects have adapted to changing climates. Here, we address the question of how many leaves from a single fossil locality must be examined to permit statistically robust comparisons in deep time.