This protocol explains how to extract pollen from fossil insects with subsequent descriptions of pollen treatment. We also describe how to document morphological and ultrastructural features with light-microscopy and electron microscopy. It enables a taxonomic assignment of pollen that can be used to interpret flower-insect interactions, foraging and feeding behavior of insects, and the paleoenvironment. The protocol is limited by the state of the fossil, the presence/absence of pollen on fossil specimens, and the availability of extant pollen for comparison.
For complete details on the use and execution of this protocol, please refer to Wappler et al. (2015), Ulrich and Grímsson (2020), and Wedmann et al. (2021).
Grímsson, F., Ulrich, S., Zetter, R., Hörnschemeyer, T., Engel, M. S., & Wedmann, S. (2021). How to extract and analyze pollen from internal organs and exoskeletons of fossil insects?. STAR protocols, 2(4), 100923. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.xpro.2021.100923