What is Palynology?

        There are many debates and discussions as to what exactly palynology is and what it includes.  The overall agreement is that it is a branch of study of micropaleontology, botany and paleobotany.   Palynology was first used by Hyde and Williams in 1944, they defined it as "the study of pollen and other spores and their dispersal, and applications thereof." (Tschudy and Scott, 1969).  They created the term to simplify the study of pollen analysis.  The definition has since been revamped to include other microscopic fossils - defined as palynomorphs by Richard A. Scott. (Kremp, 1968).
        Alfred Traverse offers a simpler, broader definition of palynology, the "study of organic microfossils".  The organic microfossils can be redefined as palynomorphs; perhaps the confusion of the field lies in what constitutes a palynomorph and what doesn't.
        Firstly, a palynomorph must be within the size range of 5- 500 micrometres, no smaller (there are a few exceptions for larger samples).  Anything made up of calcium carbonate (CaCO3) is not a palynomorph.  Palynomorphs must resist palynological preparation.

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