Eighty-nine samples from three boreholes penetrating the Horseshoe Canyon Formation (Late Campanian) in south-central Alberta (Canada) were investigated for megaspore content. The samples were found to contain 49 species belonging to the genera Azolla, Bacutriletes, Costatheca, Dictyothylakos, Echitriletes, Erlansonisporites, Ghoshispora, Glomerisporites, Minerisporites, Molaspora, Monophyllosporites, Paxillitriletes, Spermatites, Striatriletes and Trileites, including one new species of Spermatites (S. reticulatus). Deposits representing low-lying coastal plains with widespread peat swamps, meandering channels and back swamp environments yielded the highest numbers of megaspores. An analysis of characteristics of the 22 species of Costatheca and 18 species and one subspecies of Spermatites leads to the proposal of a system of shape classes. Dichotomous keys to species were prepared. The geographical and stratigraphical distributions of the genera were also reviewed to elucidate their potential use in biostratigraphic and palaeoecological studies.
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Vol. 41 • No. 1–2