Senior Curator, Division of Paleobotany, Natural History Museum and Biodiversity Research Center, University of Kansas.
Professor, Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Kansas, US.
* Fossil tree ring growth and paleoclimate interpretation
* Biological input for paleoclimate models
* Adaptations of high latitude fossil floras
* Permian and Triassic permineralized plants from Antarctica
* Distribution and diversity of Permian and Triassic floras from Antarctica
* Fossil phloem--structure, function and phylogenetic trends
Professor Taylor's research program in paleobotany is broadly concerned with the study of permineralized fossil plants and their paleoenvironments from the late Paleozoic and early Mesozoic of Antarctica. Within this general framework are several current avenues of research, including:
1. Utilization of plant fossils as past climatic and environmental indicators, especially the use of fossil tree rings as proxy climate records;
2. Evolution of high latitude terrestrial floras in Antarctica;
3. Evolution of Permian and Triassic plants from Antarctica, based on their anatomy and morphology.
In addition, she has a long-standing interest in the structure and evolution of conducting systems in the fossil record, including both xylem and phloem. This work is concerned not only with Permo-Triassic plants from Antarctica, but with representatives from other permineralized floras as well.
High latitude fossil floras are an important resource in understanding past climates and plant growth. Since these plants are often living at the limits of their tolerance, they exhibit a sensitive response to climatic variables. The Antarctic fossil plants are preserved as silica permineralizations in fossil peat deposits, so it is possible to study the cell and tissue systems of the plants for comparison with other fossil and living plants. These peat deposits have provided a wealth of new anatomical and morphological information about several Paleozoic and Mesozoic seed plant groups, especially the Glossopteridales (Permian) and the Corystospermales (Triassic).
Her detailed investigations have permitted the interpretation of functional and ecological aspects of plants, including phloem development, plant/insect interactions, and tree growth and adaptation to high latitudes. For over two decades she has brought to light the diversity of plants once living in present day Antarctica. The wealth of information from these studies has shed light on plant diversity at high latitudes in the southern hemisphere, plant biogeography and evolution, and climate history.
2007 Botanical Society of America's Merit Award for her contributions in paleobotany.
Elected to the University of Kansas, Women's Hall of Fame, April 2004
Elected a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), 1992
Kellogg, D.W., and E.L. Taylor. 2004. New insights into mite detritivory during the late Paleozoic and Mesozoic. Journal of Paleontology 78: 1146-1153.
Cúneo, N. R., E. L. Tayor , T. N. Taylor, and M. Krings. 2003. An in situ fossil forest from the upper Fremouw Formation (Triassic) of Antarctica: Paleoenvironmental setting and paleoclimate analysis. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 197(3-4):239-261.
Klavins, S. D., E. L Taylor , M. Krings, and T. N. Taylor. 2001. An unusual, structurally preserved ovule from the Permian of Antarctica. Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology 115:107-117.
Klavins, S. D., T. N. Taylor, and E. L. Taylor. 2002. Anatomy of Umkomasia (Corystospermales) from the Triassic of Antarctica. American Journal of Botany 89(4):664-676.
McManus, H. A., E. L. Taylor , T. N. Taylor, and J. W. Collinson. 2002. Petrified Glossopteris from Collinson Ridge, Shackleton Glaciar area: Upper Permian or Lower Triassic? Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology 120(3-4): 233-246.
McManus, H. A., L. D. Boucher, E. L. Taylor , and T. N. Taylor. 2002. Hapsidoxylon terpsichorum gen. et sp. nov., a stem with unusual anatomy from the Triassic of Antarctica. American Journal of Botany 89: 1958-1966.
Rothwell, G. W., E. L. Taylor , and T. N. Taylor. 2002. Ashicaulis woolfei n. sp., additional evidence for the antiquity of osmundaceous ferns from the Triassic of Antarctica. American Journal of Botany 89(2): 352-361.
Taylor, E. L. and T. N. Taylor. 2001. Adolphe Brongniart. In : Plant Sciences (R. Robinson, editor in chief), Macmillan Reference USA, Vol. 1:103-104.
Taylor, E. L. , T. N. Taylor, and N. R. Cúneo. 2000. Permian and Triassic high latitude paleoclimates: Evidence from fossil biotas. In : Huber, B. T., K. G. MacLeod, and S. L. Wing (eds.). Warm Climates in Earth History , Cambridge University Press, pp. 321-350.