Leo Hickey

Professor of Geology & Geophysics & Curator of Paleobotany


Research Interests

Plant phylogeny, evolution and paleoecology of the flowering plants, paleoclimate, and stratigraphy.

Current Research

My research centers on reconstructing the evolutionary history of the flowering plants through the coordinated investigation of their comparative morphology and their fossil record. Besides my interest in the sequence of change in flowering plant relationships and their characteristics, I also seek to elucidate the ecological- adaptive factors that have operated to produce the vegetation of today. Much of this effort has involved the development of rigorous methods of identifying the leaves of flowering plants because, even though fossil leaf impressions are the most abundant of megafossil plant remains, they have been extensively misidentified. An especially important part of my research has been the recognition and description of leaf architectural features having systematic significance and a survey of their distribution in over 450 families of living flowering plants.

Contact Information

210 Whitney Avenue
432-5006 (Office)