This paper presents a palynological examination of surface soil samples procured from butterfly mud puddling locations in northeast India and its comparison with forest surface samples from the immediate vicinity. The modern palynodata from different sites reflect a close similarity in the types and frequency of the pollen grains. However, the diversity of pollen taxa in butterfly mud puddle samples was comparatively higher than the forest surface samples. The pollen recovered in both the butterfly mud puddle location and forest surface samples reflects an evergreen forest composed of Dillenia, Elaeocarpus, Litsea, and Syzygium which exactly displays the current vegetation. The presence of cerealia, along with Brassicaceae, and Hibiscus in the butterfly mud puddle samples is suggestive of the human activity in the vicinity. However, the abundance of Lantana and Melastoma pollen in the mud puddle sediments is a strong indication of the conversion of forest vegetation in to open habitat, because these plants are correlated with human occupation. The extra-regional taxa, especially Rhododendron, in the mud puddle sediments are significant and strongly suggestive of butterfly migration from higher altitudes. Evergreen elements, along with ferns and fungal remains, in the palynoassemblage are strongly indicative of high rainfall under warm and humid climatic conditions. Thus, the main aim of this observation was to identify the potential of butterfly mud puddle samples and its comparison with other surface pollen traps in order to strengthen the relationship between modern pollen and vegetation in floristically rich areas of Assam, northeast India. The palynodata from the butterfly mud puddle locations is a useful source of palynological observation which should be considered in future palynological research.
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Vol. 41 • No. 1–2